Card skimmers placed on gas pumps are turning up in Mineral Wells and Parker County.

Skimmers were found on consecutive days last week at convenience stores in Mineral Wells, both owned by the same company, on U.S. Highway 180 West and MH 379.

The Parker County Sheriff's Office has reported three more recently found at stores in northern Parker County.

Parker County Sheriff Larry Fowler said the fraudulent card readers were located inside the gas pump's actual card readers, making them difficult to detect.

Once a person scans their cards, the reader stores the card information to be used later by identity thieves. Victims reported after using their debit or credit cards, their account information was compromised and later used in south Texas for various amounts.

“An alternative crime deterrent is to purchase prepaid fuel cards,” Fowler said. “A fuel or gift card can be the difference between maintaining your identity and banking information or becoming a victim of identity theft. Sheriff’s investigators suggest citizens monitor their account activity regularly and report any suspicious activity. If we can track where the purchases were made early, surveillance video can help in identifying and tracking the suspects. Fraudulent online activity needs to be reported immediately.”

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