Stolen Identity and Your ATM Card
Albeit ATM cards with credit cards work alike at a store’s POS and ATMs, there are some dissimilarities between them. Moreover, if you’re a stolen id victim, there’s one main contrast that results in losing your cash in place of the banks.
An Expensive Contrast
Each time you thoughtlessly swipe a credit card at the gas pump or the store, the credit card company reimburses the bill and allows you to repay them over time. If somebody manages to steal your card, they can make a huge bill, and you’ll almost certainly dedicate a lot of effort and time trying to clear out the mess. Or else, you may report to credit companies— Equifax, TransUnion, or Experian—and have a problem with credit someday.
Debit cards are different. As an ATM or debit card is linked right to your bank balance, you’re remunerating for your charges at this instant—even if your card is missing. If a hacker reaches your debit card, he will have straight access to your savings account and money. Moreover, once your cash is gone, it will be problematic to get it back.
However, the main thing to keep in mind about credit cards is that once you use them, you are promising the creditor to repay.
If you manage to inform that your card was lost earlier than it’s been used by a criminal, then you aren’t not held accountable for unlawful charges.
Low-Tech ATM Frauds
Certain id thieves utilize low-tech methods. For example, the thief tries to steal your card by placing glue or a plastic piece in the card slot. This may result in the ATM repetitively asking for your PIN, thus enabling the criminal to see while you’re touching the numbers again and again.
If the glue is placed in the slot, the card might get stuck in the machine. The lawbreaker typically stands behind you pretending he is waiting for his turn. When you get confused, they become supportive and say that the device has such an error, and you only should type your PIN 3 times to extract your card. This fails to work, and he offers to lookout the ATM while you leave to get help. The moment you’re out of view, he will use pliers, or tweezers out of his pocket, pick your card and go spending.
Be careful when your card is stuck. Never walk away far from it. Call the police officer or a safety guard.
High-Tech ATM Scams
Card «skimming» is very a common way for id thieves to receive your ATM card details. At times, they place a skimmer on the machine. The device resembles a part of the mechanism and is hard to spot. When you insert your card into the slot, it first passes through the device. When your operation is over, you take your card back.
Then the scammer will get the device and learn your card details. Alternatively, the skimmer may have a built-in tiny Bluetooth tool. In that situation, for the id thief, it is enough to get close to transfer the data. Lately, skimming devices have been detected on gas stations.
Common Sense Tips
• Do not trust anyone. If you give your card to a cashier, waiter or any service representative, watch them. Keep in mind, if you allow someone else uses your card and he spends more than you allowed him to, it will be virtually impossible to return your funds.
• Keep contact numbers in your phone. Keeping the bank and credit card companies’ phone numbers on your smartphone allows you to contact them instantly when somewhat happens to your cards. Correspondence is the key to solving your problems.
• Use a credit card instead. Tell the credit card company you are paying a bill that it is to get your funds back from the creditor.
• Never trust a stranger. A number of any id thieves will pose as somebody willing to help in a difficult time.
• Use reliable ATMs. The wisest option is to use the equipment at your bank. The second option is an alternative bank. Use separate ATMs only when it is very urgent.
• Spot the cameras. If you notice a camera at the place you’re using your card, then scammer might be scared of doing something illegal in front of a camera for apparent reasons.