checking

4 risky places to swipe your debit card

Debit Cards » Best Prepaid Debit Cards » 4 Risky Places To Swipe Your Debit Card

Skimming ATMs
Skimming ATMs

The idea that outdoor ATMs are among the most dangerous places to use a debit card seems a little bit absurd. But some ATMs present a perfect opportunity for thieves to skim users' debit cards, says Chris McGoey, a security consultant based in Los Angeles.

Skimming is the practice of capturing a bank customer's card information by running it through a machine that reads the card's magnetic strip. Those machines are often placed over the real card slots at ATMs and other card terminals.

"Any transaction you do outdoors at an open ATM is going to be higher risk exposure," McGoey says. "If the public has access to it, then someone has the ability to add skimming devices to it, position cameras on it and position themselves in a way where they could surveil it."

He says you're better off using an ATM inside a retail outlet or other high-trafficked, well-lit place.

Julie Conroy, research director at Aite Group LLC, a Boston-based financial services research firm, says even the card terminals that card users must swipe to get into ATM vestibules are being used as a skimming site by criminals. You can spot ATM skimmers by checking for ATM components that look beaten up or askew, she says.

advertisement

Show Bankrate's community sharing policy
          Connect with us
advertisement
CD & INVESTING NEWSLETTER

Learn the latest trends that will help grow your portfolio, plus tips on investing strategies. Delivered weekly.

advertisement

Blog

Allison Ross

Wal-Mart offers money transfers

Mega-retailer Wal-Mart is looking to take a chunk of the money-transfer sector.  ... Read more

Partner Center
advertisement

Connect with us