A Magalia woman is devastated after somebody stole $3,500 from her bank account, and she believes it was all part of a skimming operation.
“I was pretty much ready to cry, I think I might have when I was on the phone with the guy at the fraud department,” said Jill Vought.
She lives in Magalia, and earlier this week, out of the blue, she started getting strange alerts on her phone.
“My credit card can't be used, my credit card can't be used, this didn't clear, that didn't clear, and I’m like ‘what's going on?’”
After calling her bank, she realized someone had stolen $3,500 out of her checking account. So she retraced her steps, and said she only went to two places the last time she used that card.
“I stopped and got gas at a Paradise gas station and then went to Magalia to go grocery shopping.”
She said the grocery store was very confident no one could have attached a skimmer to the checkout counters, so she suspects it happened at the Fastrip Gas & Convenience store on the Skyway.
Unfortunately, I really do feel like it was probably at the gas station.”
However, there is no way to know how her information was compromised, whether it was skimming or someone electronically stealing her information. But, these kinds of crimes are notorious for happening at ATMs and gas stations both in the North State and nationwide, and this station owner knows that.
He wasn't around to go on camera, but says they check the pumps every day, sometimes even twice a day, and do what they can to make sure that doesn't happen to customers.
And for Vought, she's still dealing with the hassle of having her account compromised, and says it's just a very violating feeling.
“You know, you really do feel like you've been robbed. It totally feels like somebody’s invaded your space, they've invaded your bank account, they've got your numbers.”
She did eventually get her money back, but says it's all thanks to the fact that she used a credit card; her there would be no way to get that $3,500 back if it were a debit card.
Some tips to make sure it doesn’t happen to you: pull and twist the card reader and keypad, if you see anything loose or damaged then you should be suspicious. Also notice the keypad, if it's hard to punch the keys then that could mean there is a keyboard overlay installed.