Wednesday, August 21 12:15:09
IPSO, the Irish Payments Services Organisation, today warned of a new ATM crime whereby criminals are distracting cardholders while they use ATMs.
In particular the fraudsters are targeting elderly or vulnerable bank customers.
The criminal first places a device on the ATM which traps the ATM user's card in the card slot.
The unsuspecting customer uses the ATM while the criminal watches as they key in their PIN. On completing the cash withdrawal the cardholder realises their card is not coming out of the machine.
At this point, the criminal offers to help the victim to retrieve their card. The individual pretends to recover the card but actually gives the victim back a substitute card which looks similar to theirs (thus far the replacement cards have proven to be previously stolen and cancelled cards). The victim does not realise the 'retrieved' card is not theirs until they attempt to use it again. This allows the criminal time to use the genuine card for some time before the loss has been realised by the bona fide cardholder and reported to their bank.
Having seen the victim key in their PIN at the ATM, the criminal retrieves the victim's card from the card slot and withdraws as much cash as possible until such time as the card is reported stolen. They have also used in-branch kiosks, using the stolen cards and PINs, to transfer monies to foreign accounts. In the past week, six such cases have resulted in losses of E30,000.
IPSO asks the public to warn elderly or vulnerable friends and family about this scam and to avoid talking to strangers at ATMs. Customers should cover the PIN pad when using an ATM and should report to their bank any unusual activity such as the capture of their card in an ATM. IPSO advises anyone who believes they may have been affected by this scam to talk immediately to their card issuing bank which will check their account for any unauthorised cash withdrawals or activity.