ATMs or Automated Teller Machines are everywhere and almost each one of us uses them. While the banks have installed various types of security features like Electronic Signature Lock (ESL), X.25 network protocol and more, hackers are also advancing their techniques. Recently, a group of hackers stole approximately Rs. 1 crore in Agartala, Tripura using card skimming techniques. These hackers cloned various SBI ATM cards and hacked into the accounts to withdraw such a huge amount. Here's everything you need to know about ATM hacks and how you should keep yourself safe.
What is card skimming?
Card skimming techniques basically help hackers in collecting user information using the magnetic stripe of a credit, debit or ATM card. This information is copied into a blank card and as a result, they create a clone of the same card. The cloned debit or credit card can then be used to withdraw cash or swipe to make purchases. It can even be used for online shopping.
How does card skimming happen without coming to anyone’s notice?
Hackers usually install a counterfeit card reader at ATMs and card swiping machines. These counterfeit card readers then record all the user data as soon as a card passes through them. In addition to this, hackers even install a small camera pointing towards the number pad in order to capture the ATM PIN. Since the cameras can be spotted, hackers have even started to place a thin film on ATM keypad through which the keystrokes can be captured.
How to save yourself from card skimming and other bank frauds?
- Avoid using ATMs that very old or are placed at locations not very secure. Prefer using ATMs at malls or other secure locations.
- When entering your PIN, keep your other hand on top of it so if that if any camera is around, it cannot capture your PIN. Also, clean the keypad once you have withdrawn your cash.
- Avoid swiping your credit or debit card at small shops.
- If you are using a debit or credit card that only relies on a magnetic strip, ask your bank to provide a chip-based card
- Prefer opening accounts with the top private banks who have a more secure system.
- While using your debit or credit card for online transactions, make sure the website and the payment gateway are secure.
By keeping the above-given points in mind, you will not be totally safe, but it will significantly reduce the chances of getting hacked.