Po­li­ce warn re­si­dents to be on the look­out for ATM scam­mers

Graaff-Reinet Advertiser - - Voorblad -

Graaff-rei­net SAPS ha­ve is­su­ed a se­ries of sa­fe­ty tips for u­sing ATMS, par­ti­cu­lar­ly for wit­h­dra­wing cash.

Alt­hough most of the­se should be com­mon sen­se, with the in­e­vi­ta­ble in­cre­a­se in cri­me o­ver the bu­sy fes­ti­ve se­a­son, they ser­ve as an im­por­tant reminder to all to be vi­gi­lant.

The first re­com­men­da­ti­on is to a­void i­so­la­ted ATMS, and do not use any ATM la­te at nig­ht. Tho­se wit­h­dra­wing cash should al­ways try to se­lect an ATM in a well-lit, bu­sy a­rea, and pre­fe­ra­bly do not wit­h­draw mo­ney w­hen al­o­ne. This is es­pe­ci­al­ly re­le­vant for wo­men, and the el­der­ly, who are mo­re vul­ne­ra­ble. SAPS re­com­mends that a­nyo­ne who feels unsa­fe at an ATM for any re­a­son, par­ti­cu­lar­ly if the­re are pe­op­le loi­te­ring a­bout, should le­a­ve and go to a­not­her ATM.

It is al­so im­por­tant to NE­VER accept help from a stran­ger w­hen u­sing an ATM. Furt­her, ne­ver let a stran­ger e­ven tou­ch the card, as he or she mig­ht al­re­a­dy ha­ve seen your pin and be trying to switch cards. To this end, u­sers should ma­ke su­re that no-one is look­ing o­ver t­heir shoul­der w­hen en­te­ring the PIN.

A tip that was ci­r­cu­la­ted wi­de­ly on so­ci­al me­dia re­cent­ly is to al­ways press can­cel twi­ce be­fo­re put­ting a card in the slot. In re­fe­ren­ce to this, a re­pre­sen­ta­ti­ve from SAPS told the Ad­ver­ti­ser that the­re is no re­a­son for doing this twi­ce, but it is good practi­ce to press can­cel to ma­ke su­re the­re are no ot­her cards in the slot, either left ac­ci­den­tal­ly or pla­ced the­re to try to clo­ne a card. The­re was al­so a reminder to ne­ver for­ce a card in­to the card slot, and a cu­sto­mer should al­so check that it is t­heir own card that is e­jected from the ma­chi­ne af­ter the tran­sacti­on.

If a card is re­tai­ned by the ATM, it is im­pe­ra­ti­ve to call the card stop num­ber dis­play­ed at the ma­chi­ne im­me­di­a­te­ly. Be sus­pi­ci­ous of a­nyo­ne of­fe­ring to help, and do not mo­ve a­way from the ma­chi­ne until con­tact has been ma­de with the bank, and a re­fe­ren­ce num­ber is gi­ven.

Pe­op­le are al­so war­ned not to count cash in front of the ATM or whi­le wal­king, or e­ven w­hen sit­ting in an un­loc­ked ve­hi­cle. Tho­se wit­h­dra­wing mo­ney should be wa­t­chful of pe­op­le fol­lo­wing them af­ter­ward, and be on the look­out for pe­op­le “ac­ci­den­tal­ly” bum­ping in­to them or of­fe­ring help, as they may be trying to ste­al the cash from a poc­ket or hand­bag. A­nyo­ne who sus­pects that they mig­ht b being fol­lo­wed should he­ad to the ne­a­rest pu­blic a­rea as soon as pos­si­ble, or go in­to an es­ta­blis­hed shop.

It is im­por­tant to keep the PIN se­cret, and not ha­ve it writ­ten do­wn in the sa­me pla­ce as the card is kept. To ma­ke it mo­re dif­fi­cult for po­ten­ti­al thie­ves, bank cards should not be kept to­get­her with an ID, pas­sport or dri­ver’s li­cen­ce.

If a cu­sto­mer has any sus­pi­ci­on that t­heir PIN mig­ht be kno­wn to a­nyo­ne el­se, the PIN should be chan­ged im­me­di­a­te­ly, or, if this is not pos­si­ble, the card should be can­cel­led and a new one or­de­red.

Fi­nal­ly, ATM u­sers are ad­vi­sed to keep the a­mount of cash wit­h­dra­wn to a mi­ni­mum w­he­re pos­si­ble. So­me banks gi­ve cu­s­to­mers an op­ti­on to set a dai­ly li­mit, which is a pro­tecti­on in the un­for­tu­na­te e­vent of the card being u­sed by so­meo­ne who has found out the PIN frau­du­lent­ly.

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