— The post guides you on all you need to know about ATM card skimming / cloning,
— How bank card skimming is done on ATM machines,
— How skimming is done outside the ATM machines
— How to protect your card from skimmers….
Credit card/ ATM card fraud is no doubt on the increase these days with crooks perfecting their dastardly acts, scamming unsuspecting victims, with different baits each time. Although, most bank users are now familiar with “YOUR ACCOUNT HAS BEEN BLOCKED DUE TO INCOMPLETE BVN REGISTRATION” trick but even at that, some still fall victims but then, a larger percentage of ATM user are obviously not aware or ever heard of credit, debit, ATM card cloning and skimming but by the time you done reading this post, you’ll definitely know what each of these is, know how crooks skim/clone bank cards and how to secure yours.
Whoever falls to any of these kind of scam will always have a bitter story to tell, this is because one’s entire life’s saving could just be wiped in minutes as a result of this.
To start with, have you ever received a debit alert for a transaction you didn’t initiate and on getting to the bank, you were told you ordered stuffs online or you withdrew cash from another ATM point or even told you did a bank transfer (this is often rare though) and you begin to wonder how on earth such thing could have happened when no one else obviously had access to your credit, debit, ATM card?.
Although, this could have been as a result of careless handling of your card, definitely, you didn’t give out your ATM card PIN but someone probably had access to your card number which is all that is required on most E-commerce sites before making purchases on them. It could also be as a result of you falling victim to Credit card cloning or skimming which now brings us to the topic.
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WHAT IS ATM CARD CLONING OR SKIMMING?
Credit card cloning or skimming is a technique whereby someone illegally collects (steals) data/information from the magnetic stripe of a credit, debit or ATM card, the information stolen, is then copied onto another blank card’s magnetic stripe by the identity thief to make purchases online or withdraw cash in the name of the actual account holder.
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HOW ATM CARD CLONING AND SKIMMING WORK ON UNSUSPECTING ATM USERS
Skimming works by fitting the device (a camouflaged counterfeit card reader called skimmer) over the real ATM card reader slot, this skimmer looks exactly like the original card holder slot on every ATM machine.
The skimmer, having successfully been fitted on the card holder slot, unsuspecting ATM users would not know their information is being intercepted as their card passes through the false card reader which would record all of the data on any credit, debit or ATM card’s magnetic stripe as it passes through it in just a matter of seconds.
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To finalize their wicked act, the crooks often place a small, undetectable camera near the ATM keypad to record your PIN while entering it or even place a Keystroke Logger over the original ATM Keypad to record unsuspecting users’ passwords as they punch them.
This gives the thief all the information needed to make cloned ATM cards and withdraw cash from the cardholder’s checking account.
Immediately the victim’s card information gets stolen, these bad guys would often clone a new ATM card or get an existing card to overwrite, with the data stolen from victim’s card magnetic stripes. The cloned card is then used to withdraw cash or make purchases from the original cardholder’s account elsewhere but most times, these crooks prefer to make online purchases or just sell the card information to other bad guys since these make tracking them a difficult task.
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Now you know it is very possible to pull out funds from a bank account without the account holder giving out his/her ATM card details to anyone, however, the ATM machine isn’t the only place credit or ATM cards can be skimmed.
HOW CARD SKIMMING WORKS OFF THE ATM MACHINE
For those who love to make payment using their ATM cards, you also stand a chance of getting your cards skimmed.
Naturally, these skimmers are always out looking for staffs who handle huge volume of customers’ bank cards to recruit into the game, Supermarkets, Restaurants, Bartenders, Shop assistance are often major targets since they have easy access to customers’ bank cards. For example, we routinely hand our cards over to waiters to cover the check for a restaurant, the waiter (if corrupt) only needs to use a handheld device to skim ATM card during a normal transaction.
Recruits are given a pocket-size device with a scanning slot, something that resembles a pager that can be worn on a belt, they are instructed to swipe customers’ ATM cards through the device. Because the process takes only a few seconds, it can be done easily and inconspicuously without the customer or another employee noticing. Swiping the credit / ATM card through the device copies the information held on the magnetic strip into memory. The information would then be copied to another card to make purchases online or sold to other crooks.
HOW TO PREVENT YOUR CARD FROM BEING SKIMMED BY SKIMMERS
No one falls victim of card skimming without an ATM card but then, with the understanding of these precautionary measures, we won’t have to be worried about these bad guys or using those ATM cards moreso, when when those cards save us from spending hours in the banking halls. So here are some tips to help prevent card thefts.
★ Use secure ATM machines under video surveillance within the bank premises, they are less likely to be tampered with.
★ Avoid standalone ATMs (ATM machines not around the bank premises) could be around Gas stations, Stores, Markets etc, avoid them as they are easy targets for skimmers.
★ Watch where you pay with your ATM cards. Restaurants, bars, and gas stations are places where credit card incidents happen most frequently.
★ Always check for tampering around the card reader slot. Before putting your card into a reader, check it for tampering, lose fitting, jiggles or misalignment. ATM machines don’t have loose parts, if anything jiggles, it could be as a result of tampering so do NOT use that machine.
★ When you’re using an ATM, always shield your PIN as you type to keep hidden camera from catching a view of what you’re typing. ATM skimmers often place a camera within view of the keypad to steal your PIN as you punch it in. Also, If the keys seem too hard to press, eject your card immediately and use another ATM, this is because these bad guys often place a fake keypad over the real one to record your keystrokes.
★ Request for your cash at the counter more often rather than using the ATM machine every time.:roll:
★ Endeavor to always check and keep records of your account statements. Report any suspicious activities to your bank ASAP.
★ Endeavor to pay cash rather than giving out your card to shop attendants, if you must, let it be done by a trusted attendants only. Better be safe than sorry.
★ As regards online shopping and banking, be very vigilant and make sure you are shopping on a secured website. Check for the ‘s’ in the https and the padlock icon in the URL box. Also, always make use of your personal computer and if you ever do have to use a public computer for these transactions, clear the cache, cookies, and history afterward, just to be safe.
Applying the above tips, secures your bank cards against card skimmers. We hope you love this update? For those who are looking for avenues to earn Bitcoin for free and those who already have them but don’t know what to do with them asides trading them, you should stick to our page by bookmarking and liking our Facebook Page as we’ll be providing you with all major E-commerce retail sites that accept Bitcoin as payment options and also how to get Bitcoin for free.
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