Fort Myers Beach adding protection from skimmers at the pump

The City of Fort Myers Beach passed more protections to its gas pumps on Monday to keep you financially safe when you fill up your car.

Vicky Coffey knows firsthand what it feels like to have her credit card information stolen. It happened to her last year. Although she will never know where her credit card was skimmed, she suspects it happened at a gas pump.

“They got me for like $5,000,” Coffey said. “Going to spas and resorts, $100 a pop. And it’s not like they were doing withdraws. They were just spending.”

To prevent incidents like Coffey’s, Fort Myers Beach now has new rules at gas pumps and freestanding ATMs, joining a list of other cities and counties here in Southwest Florida, including Lee County, who already have this rule in place.

Red stickers on the gas pumps in Fort Myers Beach indicate that a pump is protected from skimmers. A new ordinance on Fort Myers Beach would require all gas pumps and ATMs to have visible locking devices.

Those who don’t follow this rule would have to pay a fine of at least $250,000 per day per ATM or fuel pump. Town staff will check pumps and ATMs weekly to make sure machines are not being tampered with.

Residents on Fort Myers using the pumps say they are all for the enhanced security measures.

“It gives them a chance to figure out who is doing the scamming and setting the equipment up on there,” said Wendy Workman, Fort Myers Beach resident. “It is robbery, so it gives them more of the legal rights to be able to prosecute.”

Reporter:Brea Hollingsworth
Writer:Michael Mora
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