LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Police in Las Vegas are warning the public about a card "skimmer scam" targeting retail stores in the valley.
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department's financial crimes detectives are investigating reports of smart chip skimmers discovered on retail point-of-sale systems, dating back to Feb. 18.
Police shared photos of the skimmers they've discovered, which they say are "very sleek" and are "able to store information from hundreds, possibly thousands of cards."
"When the unsuspecting customer inserts their card, the skimmer collects the data, but still processes the customer's purchase," police said.
When a customer inputs their PIN information at the point of sale, the skimmer can collect and share it with the person who placed it, enabling that person to make fraudulent purchases using the unsuspecting customer's card information.
"The skimmers can stay in place for a while, which makes this a big problem," police said.
They warned that the fraud related to these skimmers might happen days or weeks after the data was actually collected.
The department cautioned the public to double check point-of-sale terminals for the devices when making a purchase.
"If you think you have located a skimmer, DO NOT tamper with it," police said. Instead, you should alert store employees and call 311.