4 tips to surviving a bank robbery

How do bank robberies work?
How do bank robberies work? © Robynrg/

The majority of bank robberies are what Johnson calls "note jobs" in which a lone robber hands a note to a teller.

"The objective of the criminal is to pass the note, get the money and get out as fast as they can," he says. "In those cases, there is less (likelihood) that customers even know the robbery has occurred until the robber is leaving or has left."

The other type of bank robbery is the takedown, or takeover, in which two or more robbers burst into the bank, often wearing masks, showing weapons and ordering customers to lie on the floor, says Mark Bennett, president of MSB Security Consulting in Austin, Texas.

Note-passers tend to be unarmed and unobtrusive, but a takedown obviously can be "a real scary situation," Bennett says.

Either way, Johnson's advice applies. No heroics and don't draw attention to yourself. If you're looking for a car loan, you don't have to go into a bank. You can use an online tool, such as the one found on


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