Video: ATM Skimming & How To Protect Your PIN

ATM skimming

The European ATM Security Team (EAST) have posted a video seized from criminals showing how they skim cards at ATMs, and how to minimise the chances of getting caught out yourself.

In the footage (below), the criminals can be seen fitting a tiny camera device above the ATM keypad (from the point of view of the camera itself), and then add a card skimming device to the card slot. You can then see how easy it is for them to record the PIN numbers of those who do not cover their hand when entering their PIN.

Once they have both the card data and your PIN, they can then make transactions on your behalf. How nice.

To minimise the chances of this happening, simply shield the keypad with your free hand or (wallet, purse etc.).

Whilst it all seems pretty simple for the scammers if you don’t cover the keypad when entering your PIN, it’s worth remembering that the likelihood of the ATMs you’re using being tampered is still pretty slim.

EAST have some more security tips for using ATMs:

  • Check to see if anything looks unusual or suspicious about the ATM. If it appears to have anything stuck onto the card slot or key pad, do not use it. Cancel the transaction and walk away. Never try to remove suspicious devices.
  • Be cautious if strangers offer to help you at an ATM, even if your card is stuck or you’re having difficulties. Don’t allow anyone to distract you.
  • Where possible, use an ATM which is in clear view and well lit.
  • Check that other people in the queue are a reasonable distance away from you.
  • Keep you PIN secret. Never reveal it to anyone, even someone who claims to be calling from your bank or a police officer.
  • Avoid opening you purse, bag or wallet when you’re in the queue. Put your money away immediately.
  • Regularly check your account balance and bank statements, and report any discrepancies to your bank immediately.

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