Luther—Pay inside for your gas is the message from the owner of the Route 66 CONOCO gas station in Luther. Authorities on Friday reported credit card skimmers were detected on the pumps at the station.
What’s troubling about the discovery, according to Darm Patel, owner, is that the criminals are getting more sophisticated as they try to steal from unsuspecting motorists who swipe a card at the pump. He said the skimmer was undetectable from the outside of the pump in the area where customers swipe a card.
Patel said his staff is vigilant about inspecting the pumps, observing whether tape is broken on the exterior to serve as a warning. These thieves were more sophisticated using a complex system, he said.
The station, only one of two in Luther, is housed with The Chicken Shack on Route 66. On Friday evening, the parking lot was filling up and a police vehicle was present, as it was last weekend, with lights flashing to guide the heavy traffic.
The gas station remains open. And Patel recommends customers pay inside for their fuel, at his place, or anywhere.
“It is going to affect us big time,” he said. “I want to assure our customers we are doing every thing we can. I try to put myself in their situation and it’s not good.”
He said they have a security cameras around the whole property that record activity 24-hours a day. That footage is being reviewed by authorities and Conoco.
As news of the scam spread, those who’ve purchased gas with a card are checking their bank accounts. One person confirmed to the Luther Register their bank account was missing money, and they were going through the process to notify their bank right away, and file a police report.