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How to Protect Ourself from ATM Machine Scams?

A guide to defend themselves from the most common scams in electronic transactions and to obtain reimbursement of the stolen goods. Vending Machines, totems for the payment of parking and shop online the most targeted.


CREDIT CARDS, ATM card or cash. No instrument of payment is safe from fraud and theft, or in the virtual world or in the real world. But thanks to small attentions and safety systems, the number of fraud in the use of the currency bitDownloader decreased. In 2014, in fact in Italy were registered 21 thousand cases of fraudulent use of ATM, POS and electronic money on the Net, for a total of 1.8 million Euros (ABI data). In 2013 were 23 thousand for a total of over 2.6 million.

“A decrease due not only to increased consumer information, especially to an increase in protection systems implemented on various fronts, both on the Net, that at Atm and exercises commercial “, explains Stefano Talk Towers , European Sales Director of March Networks, which specializes in video surveillance systems IP to increase the level of security and data recovery “as the video surveillance, the ATM placed in the branches, the new generation of Pos can be misused very easily. For example, with video cameras watching the residence time in the self of the banks or the number of operations carried out by the customer can intervene by blocking the suspect if you observe any abnormalities in behavior.

” The doors of the banks ATMs no longer serve only to withdraw money from the ATM but also deposit checks and cash, paying bills, insurance. Atm payment increasingly prevalent are those among distributors and parking.

In Italy at the end of 2014 there were 40.5 million were over ATM, less for withdrawals (-28%) and increasingly for other payment transactions (+ 26%). Here the traps most used by the criminals:

  • The skimmer (literally fake crack), capable of reading the magnetic stripe ATM copying data.


  • The card trap : the scammers make sure that the card gets stuck in the slot and wait for the client to ask for help or come into branch to act and withdraw money.


  • The cash trap : once finished the money does not come out and are trapped in the mechanism (trapper), which gives back to the fraudster once removed all the money collected in the installation time of the trapper.


  • The Lebanese loops : on the door is applied to a device which holds the paper. The fraudster intervenes giving aid to the customer in front of the door, invited him to re-enter the pin, which is stored by the thief. After the removal of the victim, the criminal can retrieve the card and use it with the pin.


  • The Trashing : fraudsters using credit card receipts that sometimes users throw away after a purchase so careless.

    INTERACTIVE traps, online purchases by ATM

“Banks today have adopted the safety systems to prevent scams” explains Paul Romano , Sales Manager Italy March Networks “as the installation of ATMs in the areas of self banks that do not allow the superimposition of false keyboards or cracks. Or use credit cards with chips, more difficult to clone than with the magnetic strip. The problem is that these cards are still not as widespread in the US and Latin America. Unfortunately, now that banks are safer, fraudsters are focusing on the most vulnerable such as gas stations and totems for parking payment, less protected. ” That’s how to prevent fraud at the ATM and what to do if you fall into the trap:

1.   Check that the keyboard is securely attached.
2.   The slot where you insert the paper is too tight.
3.   If the paper gets stuck, report the loss to the bank without leaving the door but by calling the branch or ATM toll to lock if the agency is closed.
4.   If you can use ATMs in the Self within the bank.
5.   If the door is on the road wary of people who tend to get too close and if abort.
6.   Refuse help from others.
7.   Type the pin always covering typing with the other hand.
8.  Activate the service SMS for each transaction carried out with the paper.
9.   Report the scam to the police.
10. Do not throw your receipt. From that package criminals can retrieve the data of your electronic paper.
Even POS used in commercial establishments can be tampered with, through openness and inclusion by criminals with a microprocessor that records the codes of credit card or pin. The microprocessor is then removed and used by the criminal to develop cloned credit cards thanks to the data stored. In this case, the absence of the ad hoc controls implemented by banks, you need to take some precautions.
1.  Stay up to date on withdrawal limits and card payment, and frequently check the account statement and the list of movements.
2.  When using the credit card in a business is advisable deliver it directly to the case and always keep an eye on.
3.  Never give your credit card and pin it to other people.
4.  Be wary of those who lack the Pos to view or make more “crawl”.
5.  Before you sign a purchase receipt to check that the amount shown is correct.
6.  Never throw your receipts.
E ‘on the Net that happen yet most fraud (about 15 thousand in 2014). In this case, criminals are able to circumvent the victims with bogus emails in which they ask the bank or can carpirle slipping into the system or intercepting transactions. “Today, many banks or companies that issue credit cards adopt double layers of security, such as Secure code or physical token, or a code to be used for a single transaction that is sent to the cell phone number,” said Towers. “The advice is always to shop on sites and they use encrypted data: url appears in ‘https’ and not ‘http’. In fact http sensitive data” in the clear “and accessible to attackers.” Sniffing and phishing are some of the most common techniques used to steal credit card data on the Net:

  • Sniffing : Cyber criminals intercept coordinates of payments made ​​with credit cards, then using the same tracks to make new purchases without the knowledge of the true owner.
  • Phishing : the email address of any user may get an email that, through some trick (for example simulating formula and layout an official of the bank), leading to entering their personal data and those related to card credit.
  • Banking Trojans : computer viruses, not always detected by anti-virus software, which carpiscono login credentials to online banking . They exploit the “holes” in the protection system, install themselves, is self-reproducing and spreading to undermine the proper functioning of system, including the uncontrolled release of personal data.

    The advice to protect their purchases online:

    1.  If you receive an email similar to an official of the bank staff that suggests entering their personal data and those relating to the paper, do not respond immediately and notify the bank and the police, being careful not to delete the email.
    2.  Always make sure that the site is given a physical address and phone through which you can contact the company.
    3.  Always make sure that the sites use security protocols for data protection and that the page they are inserted the data is encrypted with “https” at the address of the page.
    4.  Always use if possible, prepaid cards are not linked directly to the current account.
    5.  Print and carefully store receipts.

If despite all the attention it is still victims of cyber criminals what to do? Responds the emitter paper explains Romano. So as soon as you realize that there were purchases that have been unaware, it is called the institution or company that issued the card, block the card and explain what happened. Also contact the company that received the payment and try to get back the money. Otherwise it opens your refund with the bank. In any case, it should report the incident to the police.

“It must be demonstrated, with receipts in hand, that there is was fraudulent use of the card and will be refunded in full, “says Romano.” If the user has misused the card, but without malice or gross negligence, it could pay a deductible of 150 euro, as provided by Legislative Decree 11 / 2010 “.


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