ATM Fraud or Cash Money Theft is as old as the machines themselves. It can have very devastating effects on the victims, still it is not considered as one of the major fraud threats. When you enter your credit card into an ATM machine and provide the proper PIN number you get directly linked to your bank account. So from this you can see that if you became a victim of ATM fraud, criminal must have had both of these. It is up to you alone to protect your credit card and PIN number to avoid financial loss.
ATM MACHINE FRAUD TECHNIQUES
Card Jam – The ATM Machine has been tampered for the sole purpose your card would get stuck in the machine. Once you would leave your location to get help a thief would appear and steal the card.
Card Swap – A skilfull quick finger will swap your card without your notice.
Violence – Where a thief will physically attack you and mug you.
Damaged ATM – Complete destruction or intentional damaging the defensive mechanism of an ATM machine. Once the machine is opened the money is taken from the boxes.
Altered ATM – This scam is performed on an original ATM machine but two items were cleverly disguised to appear as if they were part of the normal equipment. Without closer inspection you can’t recognize that the ATM is about to give information to a thief. First part is the skimmer and second one is a camera and radio transmitter.
Looks like a normal cash machine.
What you don’t see at the first moment is that a skimmer (a false credit card reader) has been installed on the machine. This skimmer will now gather personal information and transmit it to the thieves in a near location, usually in a car. Information will be used to make a clone of your card.
To the right we see a plastic holder for envelopes or ads, but hidden on the back of it there is a tiny little camera which captures the moves of your fingers when you are entering the PIN.
Scammers have now obtained both, a credit card and PIN number and you haven’t even noticed it. All they need to do now is make a clone of the card go to the next ATM machine and empty the bank account.
Guidelines to avoid ATM fraud:
- A low monthly limit on your cards
- Keep your PIN in a safe place and don’t tell it to anyone
- Watch out you are not observed when entering your PIN
- Don’t keep your PIN in your wallet
- Don’t be distracted or helped by persons near ATM
- After the completed transaction make sure the card you are holding is yours and has not been swapped
- If many ATM machines are out of order in your local area, they might have been intentionally damaged to direct you to the single one who is working
- If your card gets lost, stuck in an ATM machine or stolen cancel it and report to your bank or police as soon as possible
- Check to see if anything has changed on your machine!