ABM / Card UseTake precaution every time you use your card
In the big city there are plenty of opportunities to have your
debit card compromised. Explore some risky situations below.
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You can feel at ease knowing Scotiabank ABMs use strong security measures to protect your personal information and financial transactions. There are additional steps you should take to ensure your safety.
Whenever you enter your PIN number at an ABM or on any device with a pinpad, use your free hand or body to shield your PIN from unwanted eyes, whether that’s a person peaking over your shoulder or a hidden camera being used by criminals. Even if you are by yourself it’s a good habit to start. Many of us forget to do this, but it’s worth making the extra effort.
Your PIN is your electronic signature that is the key to your accounts. Even if your card falls into the wrong hands, without your PIN, your card is useless.
- Select a PIN that is not an easily recognizable numerical sequence (such as 1234) or an identifiable number based on your personal information (such as your birth date, address or telephone number)
- Do not write your PIN on a piece of paper that you keep in your wallet and never divulge your PIN to anyone
Protecting your PIN is the key to avoiding the fraudulent use of your ScotiaCard.
- Do not leave your bank and credit cards unattended and do not let them out of your sight when making a purchase
- Never leave cards unattended at work (the workplace is a common place for theft)
- Always remember to wait for the ABM to give your card back and take it with you before leaving
This sophisticated fraud involves swiping your debit or credit card through a card reader that records information from the magnetic strip on the card.
Once fraudsters have recorded your information, they can convert it into a counterfeit card and use it to make purchases or sell it to other scammers.
Types of skimming
- ABM machines – The process typically involves a card skimmer that fits over the real card entry slot and a hidden camera to record your button pressing sequences. This set-up is very hard to detect by the average person.
- Modifying pinpads – Most commonly found in retail establishments, fraudsters modify or replace the existing pinpad with a counterfeit one and also install cameras to capture PIN numbers. Often this is done with the knowledge and help of the employees.
- Skimming devices – Unfortunately, these devices are easy to acquire via the Internet. Because it is portable, it can easily fit in an employee’s pocket. They simply skim the card when you aren’t looking or skim the card when you hand it over to them, at restaurants for example.
General Security Tips
Criminals are always working hard to come up with new ways to get other people’s money. Although you can’t always know what they’re up to, you can avoid putting yourself in a risky situation. Here are some easy rules to follow:
- Use in-branch ABMs or Scotiabank branded ABMs instead of non-bank ABMs that are commonly found in gas stations, convenience stores, restaurants and bars. These machines are often easier for criminals to tamper with due to their public location.
- Be aware of your surroundings and try to use an ABM that is in a well-lit area and is visible to people passing by.
- Arrive prepared and avoid fumbling with your purse, wallet, and papers.
- Don’t let people into an ABM kiosk that you don’t know – have them use their own debit card to gain entrance.
- Ask to pay your bill at the terminal rather than handing your card over to a server at a restaurant or a sales assistant in a store.
- Review your statements regularly to watch for suspicious charges or incorrect debits to your account.