NYPD Trials New Skimming Detection Device “Skim Reaper”

A computer science professor and two graduate students invented a device used to check ATMs and card readers to detect the presence of a skimming device. Dubbed the Skim Reaper, the New York Police Department has been using a handful of these devices since February to combat card skimming.

Card skimming at ATMs, gas pumps and other locations is a major source of the compromised payment card information used to commit fraud today. Card skimmers install an additional piece of hardware known as a read head to copy a payment card’s data, but a new device was designed to detect their presence, while providing an alert to the ATM user that a card skimmer may be installed.

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Fraudsters Skimming Gift Cards Before They’re Activated

While the Credit CARD Act of 2009 included several provisions to protect consumers from hidden fees and expiration dates with gift cards, these popular holiday gifts can still be vulnerable to fraud. A gift card scam that made rounds this past holiday season involved skimming gift cards before they were purchased and waiting until they were sold and activated to access the funds.

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