What is ATM Fraud?

ATM fraud is described as a fraudulent activity where the criminal uses the ATM card of another person to withdraw money instantly from that account. This is done by using the PIN. The other type of ATM fraud is stealing from the machine in the ATM by breaking in.

What are the Various Types of ATM Frauds?

  • Card Shimming: This is done by installing a foreign device, known as the shimming device, on the ATM machine for getting data from the card’s chip. It can capture magnetic strip equivalent data.
  • Card Skimming: This includes stealing the electronic data of a card in order to imitate the card completely. The customer will not realise until money is withdrawn from their account without their knowledge.
  • Card Trapping: This includes stealing the ATM card by installing a device at the ATM. The card gets trapped in the cash dispenser. When you leave the ATM to receive help for getting your card out, the fraudster will enter.
  • Jamming of Keyboard: The fraudster will jam important buttons on the ATM machine keyboard such as Cancel and Enter buttons so that the transaction is unsuccessful and the customer may leave the ATM to get help. The criminal then enters the ATM to withdraw money immediately from the machine as the details are already entered.

How to Protect Myself Against ATM Fraud?

  • Avoid using ATMs in deserted regions.
  • In case you are suspicious of any activity inside the ATM, then leave or complain.
  • Check the card reader and see if any skimmer is attached to it.
  • Look for hidden cameras in the ATM.
  • If you see people loitering around the ATM, then it is better to not withdraw money from there.

What do I need to Know About ATM Skimming?

ATM skimming is done by placing a tiny device for stealing data from the card when it is being swiped. For this to work out, the criminal also needs to keep a camera inside the ATM or hack the bank camera for getting the ATM card PIN. Then the fraudster uses the details for cloning the card or for making online purchases.

How do I Know if There is a Skimmer in the ATM?

You have to check the ATM machine very carefully. If the machine has a skimmer or has been tampered, you will notice that the card reader is extended a little more. Also, you may notice that the machine keypad is standing outside slightly. Look for glue, tape, or a pinhole camera in and around the machine to detect a skimming activity.

How Does ATM Skimming Work?

For ATM skimming, a fraudster uses a skimming device. This device typically has 2 parts. The first part of the device is a tiny one and is placed on the card swiping area. When the card is inserted, the skimmer will copy the magnetic strip data of your card. The other part is a tiny camera, which will click a picture of you keying in the PIN. Thus, the fraudster will use your card PIN and card magnetic chip data for making a fake card and use it in other ATMs to withdraw from your account.

What Tips Can I Follow to Prevent ATM Card Skimming?

  • Take a proper look around the ATM machine to see if anything looks suspicious. Check if the card reader looks unusual or damaged.
  • Examine the keypad of the ATM machine. If you think it’s too thick, then don’t enter anymore details.
  • Do check your account frequently to be aware of withdrawals made by someone else.
  • Cover the machine keypad when you are entering the card PIN.
  • It is advisable to register for instant SMS updates to be aware of all your transactions. If someone withdraws without your knowledge, you can report fraud after you check your SMS.

What do I do if I have been Skimmed?

If you think you have been skimmed, you need to immediately contact your bank customer care centre. Once you report the crime, the bank will look into it and replace your card according to your specific situation. Moreover, the RBI has stated that the customer liability is zero if a third party has committed the unauthorised transaction. This is because the bank or the customer is not at fault. However, there are certain terms and conditions related to this. The bank executive will explain the procedure to you.

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