A man was arrested Friday morning in Fresno County, accused of trying to install a device used to steal bank card information on an ATM.
Mario Bertoni, 55, of Italy, was arrested after police were called to the Bank of the West in Parlier at 6:40 a.m. for a report of a man trying to install a skimmer.
Skimming devices are designed to gather bank card information and the PIN customers type in to ATMs or payment devices at stores or gas pumps. Thieves then sell the information or use it to make fraudulent purchases.
While some skimming devices are simple, others have Bluetooth technology allowing thieves to download the information remotely from the parking lot.
Skimming has been in the public eye recently, especially since a TikTok video went viral showing what appeared to be a skimming device being used at a Fresno 7-Eleven.
Earlier this year, Clovis Police told The Bee that the ATM at Bank of America at Peach and Shaw avenues has been the target of skimmers eight times. The free-standing ATM does not have employees on site at all times.
Reedley police said they have received many complaints this year related to fraudulent purchases, and the drive-thru Bank of America ATM on G Street is a common target of skimmers.
In Parlier, Bertoni was found to be in possession of devices used in skimming. He was arrested and booked into the Fresno County Jail and later released.
The Fresno County Sheriff’s Office recommends downloading “skimmer scanner” apps for a smartphone, which can warn users about gas pumps if they have been tampered.