New scam: Card skimmers spotted at self-checkout

Scammers are now targeting grocery stores by using skimming devices in self-checkout lines.

Atlanta police say the devices are deceptive dupes that look like they belong at the checkout counter. But things aren't always what they seem. Police say it doesn't hurt to do a little inspection before you make your next purchase.

"Jiggle the faceplate, number plate. See does it pop off easily. Does it look like other devices at other lanes?" said Lt. Rebecca Bandy, the department's Fraud Unit Commander.

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Card skimmer (Credit: Atlanta Police Department)

Around the holidays, news outlets like FOX 5 typically hear from law enforcement warning consumers about skimmers at gas pumps and ATMs. That's when people are more desperate for disposable money. But Atlanta police said they've seen a recent uptick in skimmers, or fake card readers, at grocery stores.

"This particular device is designed to use max strip. If you had done anything else, [like] used your chip, or tap to pay, it wouldn't have been able to get info," Lt. Bandy explained.

While most establishments have transitioned to "card-only" models, police say using cash is the best way to prevent a criminal from making off with your money.