Watch for ATM Skimming Devices
ATM users beware: Look for irregular devices on ATMs you use. Crooks may attach an overlay swipe device, which gleans your name, account number, expiration date, and security features off the magnetic stripe on the back of your card. Review statements on a regular basis -- more often online -- and report transactions you didn't make right away. Following are several precautions you can take to increase your personal safety when using ATMs.
Walk-up ATM User Precautions
1. Prepare your transaction before you approach the ATM to minimize the time spent at the machine. For example, have your card ready.
2. Do not display cash; instead, pocket it immediately when you complete the transaction, and take your card and receipt. Verify the cash when you can safely do so.
3. Do not update your check register while at the ATM. Make the entry to your records when you can safely do so.
4. Save your receipt and match it to your statement.
5. Do not accept assistance from strangers when using an ATM.
6. Always be aware of your surroundings before, during and after completing the transaction. Be alert for suspicious activity near the ATM, particularly at night. Consider taking another person with you to the ATM late at night.
7. If the ATM is obstructed from view or has poor lighting, go to another ATM.
8. Does the ATM appear to have been tampered with? Be alert for any attachment to the card slot, keypad, brochure box, etc.
9. Does anything or anyone look suspicious? If so, cancel your transaction and go to another ATM.
10. Protect the information on your card and your Personal Identification Number (PIN) by covering the keypad and standing close to the ATM if someone is waiting to use the machine.
11. Do not give your card or PIN to anyone, and do not lend your ATM card to anyone, no matter how lucrative the offer might seem.
12. Immediately report a lost or stolen card to your credit union.
Drive-up ATM User Precautions
1. Doors should be locked on your vehicle, windows rolled up, and your automobile engine running while using a drive-up ATM.
2. Leave enough room between your car and the car in front of you to exit, should the need arise.
3. If anything appears suspicious, cancel your transaction and immediately drive away.
4. If you are suspicious of being followed when leaving the ATM, drive to the nearest crowded, well-lit location and call police.
5. Do not use a drive-up ATM if it is hidden from view or not well lit.