The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) warns the public against “ATM switching” which is perpetuated using the following modus operandi:
The suspect will approach the legitimate ATM card holder after the latter has completed her/his ATM transaction telling him/her that there is money , e.g. a P500.00 bill still, stacked in the machine. The suspect would then ask the victim to make a balance inquiry of the account, giving him the opportunity to look at the Personal Identification Number (PIN) keyed-in by the victim, and would then drop a bill saying it came out of the machine, purportedly as part of the victim’s withdrawal. While the cardholder is busy picking up the money, the suspect would then remove the ATM from the machine and switch it with another ATM card.
Your PIN may also be stolen from you through “shoulder surfing” which happens when someone stands close enough to the ATM card holder to see the cardholder entering his PIN.
To protect yourself from theft of PIN numbers through ATM switching, shoulder surfing or other methods, please be guided by the following:
• When using an ATM, always shield the keypad. If you feel that somebody is standing too close, don’t be afraid to tell the next person who is in line to step back. If you feel uncomfortable, allow the other person to go first and complete your transaction once he/she has left.
• Always inspect the ATM machine you are using. Some fraudulent card reader devices can be easily spotted. If some parts around the slot for inserting the card do not seem right, consider walking away and transacting in another ATM machine.
• Never share your PIN with another person. Not even with your family or friends and absolutely never with a stranger.
• Choose a PIN that is easy for you to remember but which is not based on a birthday, anniversary, address, or telephone number.
• Change your PIN regularly.
• Do not use the same PIN on all your cards. While doing so may be easier for you to remember your PIN, it also makes it easier for a thief to access all your accounts if your wallet is stolen.
• Memorize your PIN, never write it down or keep it in your wallet.
• Report captured cards immediately. As much as possible, do not leave the machine without first reporting the card capture. Immediately call the bank where your ATM card was captured using a cell phone or the phone provided by the bank in the ATM booth.
For further clarification, please contact:
FINANCIAL CONSUMER AFFAIRS GROUP
Supervision and Examination Sector
BANGKO SENTRAL NG PILIPINAS
5th Floor, Multi-Storey Building, BSP Complex
A. Mabini St., Malate, Manila (1004)
E-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel. Nos.: Direct Line: (+632)523-3631• Trunkline (+632)524-7011 local 2584