Protection Against Skimming Fraud
Here are some safety suggestions when using your credit or debit card at ATMs and gas pumps:
- Go to the Bank Window – Instead of using an unfamiliar ATM at a bank where you usually don’t conduct business, go inside or use the drive-thru to withdraw money from your account.
- Use EMV Chip When Possible – As stated before, the information on a card’s magnetic strip is stolen with skimmers. Using the chip on a EMV Chip card instead greatly reduces the chance that your data will be stolen.
- Get Cash Back – Get cash back at the checkout when you visit a grocery store rather than using an unfamiliar or suspicious ATM.
- Pay Inside for Gas – Opt to pay inside the gas station rather than risk your card information at the pump.
- At the Table – At restaurants ask the waitperson to swipe your card at the table or go to the cashier to have the card swiped.
- Ask for a Manager – To reduce risk to your card, ask a restaurant manager to take your payment.
- Do Your Online Banking or Shopping Only on Your Own Personal Computer – Protect your personal and financial information by avoiding public-use computers.
- Watch for Altered ATMs – If anything on the front of the ATM looks unusual, loose or damaged, it could be a sign that someone has attached a skimming device.
- Cover the Keypad – When you key in your PIN, cover the keypad with your other hand to block anyone, or a camera from viewing the numbers you type in.
If your card data does get stolen, report the theft to your card issuer or bank as soon as possible. If your loss is reported in a timely manner you will not be held responsible for the lost amount and the money will be returned. Business customers, however, may have a difficult time getting money back because they do not have the same legal protection.
Lastly, pay attention to your phone. Banks and credit card companies usually have active fraud detection policies and will immediately contact you through a call or SMS if they notice something suspicious. Responding quickly can help stop attacks or at least reduce the negative impact.
Other Debit Card Fraud Protection Tips:
When you plan to travel, let your card issuers know your travel dates and destination. If your card gets swiped at an unusual location, the card issuer may decline the suspicious transaction.
Set up Banking alerts through your Internet Banking for low balance alerts or negative balance alerts. You can set alerts up through email or SMS Text.
Make sure your contact information at your financial institution is current. The Bank may not speak to you if you are unable to provide the contact information that is on file.
Finally, check your balance frequently.