Protecting You at the Pump

2017 Assembly Bill 1045

This legislation would make it harder for criminals to steal your credit card information using “skimming” devices illegally placed on gas pumps. The bill would require gas station owners across Wisconsin to install separate, unique locks and keys on their pumps – just like a city law currently requires those located in the City of Madison to do.

Credit card skimming has become commonplace because it is easy for criminals to install skimming devices on gas pumps that open with a universal key that is easy to purchase on the internet. After Madison gas stations were hit by criminals using credit card skimmers, the Madison City Council took a common sense, preventative approach and adopted an ordinance requiring that each gas pump have a separate and unique lock installed. 

Unfortunately, the Republican response at the state level fails to protect you from credit card skimming. Rather than taking steps to prevent criminals from installing credit card skimmers, the Republican led Assembly passed legislation that simply grants immunity to gas station owners from being liable for losses due to skimming but does nothing to prevent your credit card information from being stolen in the first place. While gas station owners should not bear the cost of the acts of criminals, their immunity from liability should require that they take reasonable steps to protect their customers.

This proposed legislation would take those reasonable steps to ensure that gas pumps are secure, and criminals would no longer be able use a universal key to open pumps and install skimming devices.  You should not have to worry about criminals having easy access to your credit card information no matter where in the state you fill up your tank.

Click here to view the status of this legislation.