About bank fraud
ATM skimming attempts are becoming increasingly common, and the cybercriminals use sophisticated methods to steal large amounts of money.
“We have witnessed several major ATM attacks globally over the past few months, in Thailand, India, Latin America, across Europe and in other countries around the world. In these incidents, cybercriminals managed to steal millions of dollars,” warns Michal Salat, Avast’s director of threat intelligence.
According to a survey conducted by FICO, a company that provides analytical solutions for decision-making, there was a 70% increase in the number of attempts to debit card fraud at ATMs and merchants in the United States in 2019.
This number, which is 546% higher than that registered between 2016 and 2018, is a record for the FICO Card Alert Service, which monitors hundreds of thousands of ATMs and readers in the USA. According to a study, debit card fraud occurred more frequently at ATMs that are not in banks, such as convenience stores.
While on Holiday, people tend to be more relaxed and do not pay attention to what is happening around them, this is why ATM frauds have an increasing number, especially in tourist cities and countries.
Here are some simple tips on how to avoid them and still enjoy your vacation.
The mechanism is important
ATMs look and work mostly the same in each country, so this is a plus.
Always be alert to the physical condition of the ATM. If the card does not fit smoothly in the machine or if the equipment is very old, look for another ATM.
ATM scammers use a variety of techniques to steal your debit card information. They would install a card reader somewhere in or on the ATM. When you enter your debit card, the malicious device will read your data via magnetic tape.
Since your ATM data without an ATM pin is useless, a skimmer would install a hidden camera or use a malicious device to record keyboard entries. They can then make duplicate cards based on your bank account information and transfer funds to the ground.
ATMs are made to withstand the most brutal blows. There must be no fragile parts on the ATM.
Check if the ATM is legit
Before entering your ATM card, make sure that there are light components on the device. Some of them include a card slot, a keyboard, or look for any part that might look suspicious. One way to determine if a part is malicious is to remove it.
In addition to checking the various components, scan different areas of the ATM. Many ATM imitation devices are glued to the actual device, you can mark malicious parts.
For example, if a malicious card reader is installed above the actual card reader, it will dim the flashing light. That way you will know something is wrong.
Each country is full of third-party ATMs that are well placed in places like bars and close to grocery stores, which could drive you down an easy route and just use it.
Always remember to use a legal ATM as it is much safer than a third-party ATM. In some cases, it also increases the chances of returning stolen cash. If you are in a forging country just search or ask at the hotel the most common banks in that country.
If you notice someone who has been around for a long time, do not approach the ATM. Avoid talking near the cashiers and wait in the car until the ATM is empty.
Sometimes the scammers won’t install anything but will try to steal the card or money right from your hand, just because, again, tourists tend to relax in holiday and they aren’t alert at all.
Don’t waste time
It is important to call for assistance immediately if the card gets stuck in the machine. This problem may be a trick for the criminal to remove your card later. In any case, replace your card as soon as possible.
When you enter your ATM pin, cover the keyboard. Always think that someone is sliding on you.
As part of ATM skimming, an attacker can install hidden cameras to record your ATM pin. Therefore, it is better to cover the keyboard every time you make a transaction.
Change the card
If you are suspecting that your card has been compromised in any way, whether at a store, restaurant, or ATM, it may already be a reason to ask the bank for a new number and password, even if your card has not been defrauded.
Helped by technology
Check if the company or bank responsible for your debit card has any SMS or e-mail alert technology in case of suspicious activity with your card, or just at any transaction. Some banks paying a monthly fee will provide an SMS or email alert when certain amounts of money are deposited or spent from the bank account, as well as online purchases require an extra code, usually received on SMS.
Also, you can ask the bank to set a transaction limit on a certain amount of money – in case a card is lost or stolen.
Use multiple cards while traveling
It’s a good idea to carry multiple cards, especially when traveling, and dedicate each card, for example, one just for ATM withdrawals, another just for purchases, and another for online banking.
That way, even if your card is compromised, you won’t fall to the ground. This idea saves you money and is also good if you are traveling abroad, imagine what you would do if your card froze in a country where you don’t know the body.
Recording at ATMs is a new type of security experts trying to reduce them. The problem with this crime is that in most countries there is little chance of recovering bank funds.
It is said that if an attack is reported within 60 days, then in accordance with the Electronic Funds Transfer Act, the consumer is not liable for stolen funds due to ATM withdrawals.
Various banks offer protection against the loss of funds due to ATM fraud. However, the process is tedious at times and can take several days before you recover your funds. Therefore, it is better to take caution before you become a victim of ATM filing.