Pay for gasoline with credit or debit card

The other day a friend sent me an e-mail she received warning about a danger if one pays for gasoline with a credit or debit card.

The e-mail relayed the story of a friend whose coworker purchased gasoline with her credit or debit card. The coworker ensured she took her receipt. However a month later, when she received her billing statement, this coworker noticed TWO additional $50 purchases. Upon investigation this coworker learned, because did not push the “clear” button on the pump after her purchase, the gas station employee used the coworker’s debit or credit card to purchase his own gasoline.

I don’t know if this “story” is true or not. But there are lessons to be learned.

First, pay for your gasoline with CASH. That’s the simplest way to avoid unauthorized charges (people often say, I don’t like to carry cash because I could be robbed. Let’s say you are carrying $100 when you are robbed. Yes, that’s a significant amount lost. Yet the amount of unauthorized charges when someone gains access to your credit or debit card are often much higher).

Also, I’m risk adverse. About four years ago I was regularly purchasing gasoline with my credit union check card (linked to my checking account where my pay is deposited and my mortgage payments are debited from). Then I either read or heard a news report about criminals stealing credit & debit account numbers stored at gas pumps. That’s all I needed to read or hear. Boy, was I stupid! My checking account could have been WIPED CLEAN, EMPTIED. I swore off using debit or credit cards to pay for gasoline.

Pay for your gas with cash. No stress, no worries.

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