Identity theft is a serious concern for motorists who regularly utilize their credit or debit cards to pay for fuel at the pump. According to a recent AAA Consumer PulseTM Survey, nearly 40 percent of Wisconsinites have a low level of trust that their information will remain secure at gas stations. That is why AAA – The Auto Club Group supports currently being consider in Wisconsin (AB 196 and SB 133) that would criminalize the possession or use of “skimmers,” which identity thieves use to steal card information at gas pumps and ATM’s.
“Reclaiming one’s identify and dealing with the resulting credit damage can be costly, time consuming and stressful,” said Nick Jarmusz, Wisconsin director of public affairs for AAA – The Auto Club Group. “This legislation is needed to help law enforcement stop would-be thieves from preying upon unsuspecting motorists.”
AAA’s survey reveals that 1 out of 4 Wisconsinites (25 percent) have been a victim of identity theft or fraud in the last 2 years. While this legislation is an important step towards preventing such crimes, all consumers should to take proactive steps to reduce their risk for identity theft. AAA recommends that motorists:
- Use a pump in plain sight of the cashier, as skimmers are often placed on the pumps farthest from the storefront.
- Inspect the card reader at the pump. If it looks like it’s been opened or its security tape has been broken, inform the cashier and do not use that pump.
- Pay for your gas inside the store.
- Use cash instead of your credit card.
In order to help our members better protect themselves, AAA has partnered with Experian, one of the three credit reporting agencies, to offer ProtectMyID. Once you enroll in this free benefit, it provides you with daily credit monitoring and will send you an email alert whenever it detects key changes on your credit report. If fraud or identity theft occurs, ProtectMyID will help you investigate and resolve the situation. For even greater protection, AAA Members can upgrade to ProtectMyID Deluxe and receive a 60% discount.
About The Auto Club Group
The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America. ACG and its affiliates provide membership, insurance, financial services and travel offerings to over 9 million members across eleven states and two U.S. territories including Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands; most of Illinois and Minnesota; and a portion of Indiana. ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with more than 57 million members in the United States and Canada and whose mission includes protecting and advancing freedom of mobility and improving traffic safety. Motorists can map a route, identify gas prices, find discounts, book a hotel, and access AAA roadside assistance with the AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile. AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at AAA.com.