Skimming and ATM Data Theft

Skimming is a method used to capture information from a cardholder by the by identity thieves through Skimmer. A skimmer is a device designed to look like a card insertion slot at an ATM and is used for undertaking data thefts.

How does Data theft happen?

  • The skimmers cannot be usually spotted by an untrained eye.
  • The skimmers have circuitry that read and store the data from the magnetic strip of an ATM card even as the ATM processes the same data.
  • Fraudsters also install pinhole cameras in places like the top of the cash dispenser, the deposit slot or just above the keyboard to steal the PIN for the card.
  • In some cases, they have also used PIN pad atop the original pin pad.
  • Days after installation, the data thieves recover the skimming machines, cameras and collect the stolen data, and decode the PIN for a card.
  • Using stolen data, the criminals clone ATM cards and use these in different cities and even transfer the data to associates, or sell the data to other gangs.

Skimming can be prevented with the alertness of people who load cash in ATMs, alert bank officials by spotting any illegal devices planted in ATMs, posting guards at ATMs, by using installing machines that do not facilitate installation of cameras and skimmers and by the use of new high-security bank cards that have facilities against theft of data through skimming.


Latest E-Books