Sophisticated skimmers discovered at a pair of Santa Barbara County ATMs

Sep 14, 2015

A Central Coast financial institution is working with the FBI to figure out who attached skimming devices to a couple of its ATMs.

The CoastHills branch at Broadway and Stowell in Santa Maria was one of two locations where an ATM skimmer was discovered on Saturday.
Credit Google Maps

Skimmers have the ability to steal a card holder's account information.

CoastHills Credit Union says a skimming device was found on the ATM at its Lompoc branch on the corner of H Street and College Avenue, and the Santa Maria branch on Stowell and Broadway.

The Credit Union said Monday that new "instant replacement" cards were being made available to members who used those machines back on Friday and a portion of Saturday.

These particular skimmer devices fit right over the ATM card reader and look identical to the actual reader.

“We are partnering with law enforcement to fully resolve the issue, including the FBI, who told us that this type of sophisticated skimming device is new territory to them,” said Paul Cook, CoastHills Chief Information Officer.

The Credit Union says it has surveillance video from both locations, including an image of the people suspected of attaching the skimmers. The video has been provided to local police.

CoastHills is a not-for-profit credit union with branches in Ventura, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey and Santa Cruz counties.