LOS ANGELES – ATM cameras are typically used to catch criminals using a stolen card, but thieves have found ways to shoot their own video to steal cash, warns the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
“Fraudsters are placing Bluetooth pinhole cameras, which are small and easy to overlook, above an ATM keypad to record PIN numbers. They also use fake ATM card readers equipped with skimming devices to capture the card’s magnetic strip information,” said Maria Ramirez, Head Deputy of the High Technology Crime Division. “Armed with the PIN number and the stolen data, thieves can make counterfeit cards, sell the valuable information or shop online.”
Authorities recommend the following tips to protect against ATM fraud:
- Look at the card reader to see if there is anything novel or different. Most newer ATMs have a flashing card slot light.
- Monitor your bank account daily and review all written monthly statements.
- Do not allow anyone to assist or “shoulder surf” you at the ATM.
- Use ATMs located inside a bank branch.
If you or someone you know has been the victim of this type of scam, contact the Los Angeles County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs at 800-593-8222 or visit http://dcba.lacounty.gov.
[Information via news release from the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.]