(KFVS) - Some financial institutions like Commerce Bank are urging drivers to stop using their debit card PIN's when paying at the pump.
The warning comes after a recent rash of PIN theft at gas pumps across the country.
Can I still use by debit card?
When prompted to choose "credit" or "debit", always choose "credit".
If you're using your debit card, the transaction will still be posted against your checking account.
In situations where "credit" is not an option at the gas pump, you should pay inside at the gas station.
Why shouldn't I use my PIN?
By not entering your PIN, you prevent the fraudsters from getting you PIN.
If they do get your PIN, scammers can print a counterfeit card and go straight to the ATM and drain out your account.
Are gas pumps safe?
Most pumps are safe to use.
The problem: you can't tell which ones the scammers hide their skimming equipment inside.
That is why financial institutions like Commerce Bank advise people to "skip the PIN at the pump."
How do I know if I am protected?
While most banks monitor accounts, there is a chance they might miss something.
Anyone with a debit card is encouraged to pay close attention to their account activity.
It is best to regularly login to your online banking or read over monthly account statements.
If you notice something irregular, make sure you contact your bank immediately.