COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - It's smaller than a deck of cards, but meticulously designed to attach on the mouth of card readers at ATM's or gas pumps: card skimmers. It's not a new technique for scammers, but it's becoming more advanced.
How does it work?
Scammers secretly swipe all your credit or debit card information with this device that's latched on card readers.
"It sucks, it really does," said Julie Lynch.
Lynch fell for the trap two years ago at a gas station.
"I later found out my identity was stolen from someone in New Mexico," said Lynch.
The card reader disguised as a normal machine, read every number on her card.
"They charged up $11,000 on my card," she said. "Then they had my social security number."
Scammers usually have to come back to the machine where they installed the skimmer to pick up the file containing all the stolen data.
The El Paso County Sheriff's Office reports an increase in skimmer fraud.
Infact, just last week - Alberto Brioso - from Colorado Springs, got caught with gas pump and ATM skimmers along with a new device used to re-code credit cards with stolen information.
This is a perfect example of how these scams are constantly changing.
Det. Jon Price said it's hard to stop them, but you can stay vigilant.
"Don't be deceived to think that it can't happen to you, because these people are professionals and do it all the time," he said.
If it happens to you - remember it won't just go away.
"They have my social security number, they have my name and my address, and I don't know if they can use it again," she said.
If you feel this has happened to you: go back to the station or ATM and request surveillance video if it's available.