Fraud Friday: 7 ways to spot and dodge card skimmers

Oct 27, 2023 | General News

Have you ever heard of card skimming? It’s a sneaky and increasingly prevalent method used by malefactors to steal consumers’ card information by attaching a small, inconspicuous device known as a skimmer to a legitimate card reader or ATM. If you insert your card into a compromised reader, the skimmer secretly captures your card’s data, including the card number, expiration date, and sometimes even your PIN. This Fraud Friday, we’ve got a few tips for you on how to protect your identify and keep your card info safe.

Keep an eye out for card skimmers.
1. Before using an ATM or a card reader at a gas pump or store, take a moment to inspect it. Wiggle the card reader slightly; if it feels loose or comes off easily, it may be a skimmer. Genuine card readers are securely attached.
2. Check for any unusual attachments, wires, or loose parts around the card reader or keypad. Legitimate card readers have clean, seamless surfaces.
3. Inspect the area around the card reader for tiny pinhole cameras. Skimmers often use hidden cameras to record PINs. If you do spot anything suspicious, report it to the authorities.

Safeguard your hard-earned money with these 4 tips and simple practices.
1. Whenever possible, use ATMs at reputable financial institutions or well-lit, high-traffic areas. These locations are less likely to be targeted by criminals.
2. Opt for the chip reader instead of swiping your card whenever you have the choice. Chip technology is more secure and less susceptible to skimming.
3. Monitor your bank and credit card statements regularly for any unauthorized or suspicious transactions and promptly report any discrepancies to your financial institution.
4. To protect your info against hidden cameras, cover the keypad with your hand when you’re entering your PIN.

Staying vigilant and following these precautions will significantly reduce your risk of falling victim to this type of fraud. Always trust your instincts and err on the side of caution when using card readers or ATMs, and if you ever suspect fraudulent activity, don’t hesitate to contact us, or your card issuer, for assistance.