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Police suspect card skimmers in 50 reports of compromised credit, debit cards

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MARION, Ind. -- Police think credit card skimmers are to blame after nearly 50 people reported similar cases of hacked credit and debit cards.

"It’s just the way we operate, we just pay cash," Marion resident Ron Thomas said.

Paying in cash may be the way to go, for now, in Marion. Police said it seems skimmers placed around town have been stealing people's card information.

According to a news release, nearly 50 people have reported compromised cards since June 1st, all with similar stories. Unauthorized purchases were made at Walmart stores across the state, including in Indianapolis, Greenwood, Anderson, and Fort Wayne. In some cases, there were multiple purchases made.

Officers looked through bank statements and found "common denominators" at the self-check at the Marion Walmart, and the car wash at the BP on 2nd Street.

In both cases, police did not find actual skimming devices, which could have been removed. They said it's not the establishments' fault, as the devices grow in popularity and become easier and easier to slip into a machine and retrieve later.

Police released surveillance images of a possible suspect in the case.

Surveillance photos

Surveillance photos

Customers at Walmart told us they were worried by the activity.

"After years and years of shopping with my parents and using Walmart as my main shopping store and finally hearing about this stuff, it’s a big surprise to me," customer Travis Rutherford said.

"I do worry about using my card everywhere because you (have) to worry nowadays. ... People come up with different scams, every few days there’s a new one," customer Brian Kennedy said.

Police said you should check your account and if your card is compromised, contact your financial institution right away, cancel your card, and request a copy of your bank statement. They also asked that you call them and request to fill out a fraud report.

A Walmart spokesperson told CBS4 that they had not found any card skimmers inside the Marion store. Erica Jones, Senior Manager of Communication, provided this statement:

“We have zero tolerance for any crime against our customers, our associates or our company.

“If there is possible fraudulent activity in our stores, we take action to protect our customers. We work with law enforcement authorities to investigate and take additional steps to help ensure that our customers’ transactions are safe, including increasing store inspections.

“We require customers with chip enabled cards to use that technology for their transactions in all of our U.S. stores. We believe this is the most secure technology for customer transactions at any retail location and encourage customers to take advantage of this technology wherever they shop.”

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