Senate approves Schmidt bill combating credit card fraud

Sen. Wayne Schmidt

Sen. Wayne Schmidt

LANSING, Mich. — The state Senate on Wednesday passed a bill sponsored by Sen. Wayne Schmidt that would enable more secure shopping at gas stations throughout the state.

Senate Bill 415 would decrease the threat posed by credit card skimming devices by requiring all gas stations in Michigan to improve security measures at the pump.

Under the bill, filling stations would have the option of installing any of the following on individual pumps: tamper proof security tape with logo; a device to render the pump or scanning device inoperable with unauthorized access; encryption of credit card information; a new lock to replace the manufacturer’s lock; or any other security measure approved by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD).

According to MDARD, approximately 70 credit card skimmers have been found and removed from gas pumps in Michigan since 2015.

“Credit card skimming devices are one of the main ways criminals steal vital personal information from consumers’ accounts,” said Schmidt, R-Traverse City. “We are thankful that customer protection has increased at the many gas stations that have taken the initiative to secure their pumps. My measure will help ensure that all stations in the state provide this security.”

Electronic skimming devices are typically installed in seconds, hidden inside of gas pumps, and are used to copy the credit and debit information of customers for criminal use. Most pumps have a universal master key that criminals can obtain easily to gain entry, install the device, and then return later to retrieve the stolen information.

SB 415 now heads to the Michigan House for further consideration.