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Americans stealing gas as prices soar

As fuel prices hit record highs in the US, thieves either target pumps and transport vehicles, or hack into networks of gas retailers.

Published: June 29, 2022, 10:29 am

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    Earlier this month, at Virginia Beach, police observed “many vehicles” using equipment to pump gas from a gas station that had closed down.

    “Individuals then sell gasoline at a discounted price via a telephone application and operate it on social media. It was determined to have been advertised. In a few days, a few thousand dollars worth of gasoline was stolen from the business,” Virginia Beach Police Station Said in a press release on June 14.

    To protect themselves from cyberattacks, fuel retailers now have to make sure that their networks are well-protected, with vulnerabilities in their technology infrastructure and hackers breaking into and stealing or modifying information.

    Some 25 percent of fuel retailers have reported increased gas theft. Citing data from the US Energy Information Administration, an industry analyst told Fox News Digital that a quarter of gas retailers were experiencing an increase in gas theft compared to last year.

    Thieves digitally “accesses the pump, physically or electronically disables the system in some way, resets the price very low, or keeps a transaction open that allows multiple people to perform the same transaction,” he explained.

    “It’s one trend. Another trend is people who modify or re-adjust flat panel vans or certain vehicles, park them on underground storage tanks, draw gas from the underground storage tanks, and then resell them. And that’s probably the most common right now.”

    In Salt Lake City, Utah, security camera footage was taken of a thief stealing gas from a truck parked outside just before it caught fire.

    According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), the national average gasoline price on weekends is $4,91 per gallon, exceeding $5 and $6 per gallon in some western and northeastern states. In California, Saturday’s average was $6,33.

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