With increasing rates of ATM scams in recent years, it's extremely important to stay alert and protect yourself when using the ATM. ATM fraud occurs when criminals steal card information through an ATM, and use that information to make unauthorized purchases or withdrawals. They typically rely on equipment installed at ATMs or wireless sensors to capture the information and create duplicate cards. Even without a physical card, the stolen data can be used to charge purchases or withdraw funds from your account.
Thieves use a variety of tactics to access confidential financial data. One of the most common ways is by attaching a card "skimmer" to the ATM card slot that reads your card number. These devices record card data when you insert your card into the machine. A wireless device will then transmit card information to their equipment while you use the ATM. There may also be a wireless camera disguised nearby that can record your PIN as you enter it.
Here are some safety steps you can take to be proactive and protect yourself from ATM skimming.
- Examine the ATM for signs of skimmer devices. Look out for loose or bulky card insert slots, exposed wires, tape or sticky residue around the card insert or PIN keypad. If something looks off, find another ATM.
- Never share your PIN with anyone. If you have trouble using your card at an ATM, contact your financial institution. Refuse help from strangers!
- Shield the ATM keypad as you enter your PIN. Stand directly in front of the keyboard and do not enter your PIN if anyone else can see the screen.
- Be aware of your surroundings, especially at night. While scammers are more likely to target an ATM that is in a high-traffic area, choose one within the sight of a security camera.
- When using a drive-up ATM, make sure to keep passenger windows closed and your doors locked.
Please contact Logix at (800) 328-5328 or visit www.lfcu.com if you have any questions about this topic or would like to consider opening an account.