Consumer Alert: ATM Safety


Consumer Alert: ATM Safety

Consumer Alert: ATM Safety

                Your safety is our top priority. According to the FBI, ATM theft has had a significant increase since 2020. While we do our best to ensure your safety at the ATM by locating them in secure areas and maintaining the latest safety protocols, there are also things consumers can do to limit their risk at any ATM they use.

                 Many criminals who target ATMs utilize the same techniques they do for other payment devices. ATM skimming occurs in a significant portion of theft reported from bank ATMs. This is when criminals attach a device to the ATM card reader in order to record account details. This information is then used to create clone cards. Another popular way for criminals to gain access to ATMs is through ATM “cash trapping.” This involves the criminal inserting a contraption into the cash-dispensing slot so bills cannot be retrieved. The criminal then steals the cash when the customer leaves.

                Other dangers can present themselves if the criminal decides to actively rob someone after they have used the ATM or attempts other intimidating actions to gain access to your money. Below are some tactics you can take to protect yourself:

  1. If you see something, say something.

If you see someone who looks suspicious hanging around an ATM, do not approach the ATM; instead, contact the authorities. Sometimes criminals will wait around for a victim to collect their cash only to steal it from them later. You should always stay aware as you perform your transaction. Instead of immediately counting your cash, put it somewhere safe on your person, move to a secure location, and then check your withdrawal.

  1. Always keep receipts, shield your cash from view, and protect your PIN.

If it appears that your cash is not being properly dispensed, the ATM looks like it has been tampered with, or someone is attempting to look at the screen while you are using an ATM, best practice is to not complete the transaction. Then, contact the appropriate authorities.

However, you can also mitigate theft by taking preventative measures. Keeping receipts provides a record of your ATM transactions in case something is called into question later and can prevent someone from getting away with stealing your cash by using something like a cash trap. Shielding the screen with your body prevents anyone from being able to view your activity or sensitive information. Finally, keeping your PIN to yourself will help ensure only you have access to your funds.

  1. If you go to an ATM at night, take special precautions.

Even the most well-lit and secure ATM may pose a problem at night. Take extra precautions by bringing another person with you and parking as close to the ATM as you can, and don’t use an ATM with poor visibility.

                If you encounter any suspicious devices or activity around an ATM, report it to your bank immediately! Your financial institution takes your safety seriously.



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