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Fuel Dispenser Security: Why key control is important at the pump


Security of fuel dispensers is becoming more and more critical to protect. Credit card skimming is on the rise all over the country because criminals realize how easy it is to install credit card skimming devices, leaving your station and your customers’ credit card information more vulnerable to theft.

Gas station security can be enhanced with a simple solution: making sure to regulate who has keys. Typically, thieves gain access to fuel dispenser locks because the keys to those locks are common and easy to duplicate. Thieves can simply have a key made to open a fuel dispenser and install a credit card skimming device. Gas station owners and management are unlikely to notice the unlawful entry or that duplicate keys are being used. As a result, sooner or later, hundreds of customers get their personal information stolen leading to unauthorized charges and identify theft.

While many gas stations now use pump tamper evident labels, they don’t solve the access problem. These labels can be easily purchased online by anyone and can be used to disguise fuel pumps as secure, when a credit card skimmer has actually been installed. The best way for owners to improve fuel dispenser security is by ensuring that keys can’t be copied.

How InstaKey’s Fuel Dispenser Lock Program Works

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InstaKey’s Fuel Dispenser Lock Program is a viable solution to fuel dispenser access control because it’s based on fundamental components of industry best practice key control solutions, which have been trusted and used for over 30 years. As gas stations across the country fall victim to this rising threat at the pump, InstaKey’s KeyControl® Program reduces owners’ concerns through high security lock technology and methodology developed to prevent fuel dispensers from being compromised in the first place.

How is it done? By employing the following four security cornerstones: Restricted, Serialized Keys, User-Rekeyable Locks, Cloud-based Key Tracking Software, and special tailor-made Program Administration Services.

Let’s take a look at each of these security cornerstones in more detail:

1. Restricted, Serialized Keys

You’ve seen keys that say “DO NOT DUPLICATE” but, even these keys can be easily found at your local hardware store or locksmith to have a copy made, with no questions asked. That’s not the case with InstaKey’s restricted keyways, as they are not available to the open market or locksmiths, meaning that they won’t have the key blanks to produce an unauthorized copy. As an added measure of security, each key is stamped with a unique serial number to track to each key holder. That way, when you get keys back from key holders, you’ll know which serial numbered key they had and that the key hasn’t been duplicated. This cornerstone alone eliminates the possibility of thieves accessing fuel dispensers without your knowledge.

2. User-Rekeyable Locks

But, what if a key goes missing? Are you prepared for when a key is lost, stolen or not returned by a terminated employee? In these situations, you’ll need to change the lock(s) and InstaKey provides a time and money saving solution for that! InstaKey’s user-rekeyable locks mean that gas station owners can instantly rekey the affected lock(s) with just the turn of a key – no locksmith or changing of lock hardware required. For more information, read our blog on Rekeying Locks vs. Rekeyable Locks: Which is better?

3. Cloud-Based Key Tracking Software

By utilizing InstaKey’s cloud-based key tracking software, you can track who has been assigned each key and what fuel dispensers those keys open. TheKeyControl® information is protected through secure login and the functionality is designed to make key tracking easy and efficient. Whether you want to track it yourself, allow your managers to maintain it, or have InstaKey manage your program, you’ll have the information right when you need it from any smart device.

4. Program Administration Services

InstaKey offers a dedicated point of contact for your customized program, ready to help with best practices, program management techniques, and sustaining overall compliance to help you save time and money on your locks and keys. Any time you have questions or need help resolving a situation, InstaKey personnel are here to help. With the tools we provide, you can easily manage the size and scope, no matter how complex or how large your keyed environment becomes. 

These cornerstones have been developed into best practices by our clients to ensure that you not only save money on keyed entry, but that the program you implement is a secure and cost effective deterrent against credit card skimming.

Interested in getting your gas station better secured through a KeyControl® Program? Learn more by contacting InstaKey today!

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