Scams

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The ATM Skimmer Scam

Posted by Awareness

The Definition: The ATM Scam is costing citizens of the U.K. £75 million per year – it is a high-tech hustle wherein the scammers attach a device over the slot of an ATM machine. This device will read all the information from the magnetic strip on the back of your card, and record for future use by the thieves. It still allows the genuine ATM reader to accept your information and dispense money, so the mark has no clue that he has just been the victim of an electronic rip-off.

The Mark: Nobody is immune, and no individual is more or less susceptible than another – with the exception of those visiting this site, that is. Armed with the lessons that shining a bright light on this hustle will teach you, you have a much better chance of avoiding this swindle.

The Scam: Our thieves have for the moment morphed into a “geek squad,” putting their technical talents to work fabricating a magnetic-strip reader. This will be fitted to a slot that will overlay the actual slot on an ATM machine. When it is in place, only careful examination will reveal that it is not an original part of the machine, but a nefarious add-on designed to steal sensitive information. The device is called a “skimmer.” Also built into this fabricated piece is a pin-hole camera, which will capture your PIN as you punch it into the keyboard.

Our scammer finds a likely cash point location, and when alone, casually performs what looks like a normal ATM transaction. But what he has really done is the equivalent of a highwayman setting up an ambush on a country road – he has installed a device that will ambush the precious information on your ATM card’s magnetic strip.

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