According to the latest reports from Kenyan banks, cases of frauds involving millions of Kenyan shillings through ATMS are on the rise. There are various ways through which Kenyans are losing their hard-earned money through ATM theft or fraud. Below are a few of them and ways you can use to safeguard your money.
ATM Tricks Robbers Use To Steal From Kenyans
The first instance is when criminals hold their victims at ransom, take their cards by force and force them to reveal their PIN before proceeding to withdraw from a nearby ATM. Such instances leave the victim with no choice because the robbers even threaten to kill them should they refuse to reveal their PINs.
The second technique robbers use is one termed by bankers as “card skimming”. According to Diamond Trust Bank, card skimming is a situation whereby gadgets known as “skimmers” are inserted in the ATM to steal ATM details then the skimmer develops a duplicate card and use it to withdraw all your money. Typically, skimming involves placing an additional card reader over the ATM’s card reader which then collect all your card details as you key in your PIN.
Another trick they use is waiting for your card to be rejected at an ATM (I wonder how they know your card will be rejected) then they advise that you use a cellphone to seek for assistance. They then dial a number of one of their accomplice (of which you have no idea about) who then claims to be an official from the bank (they already know your bank based on the ATM card you’re using). They pretend to cancel the initial transaction and asks you to proceed to make a withdrawal but you’ve to tell them your PIN to help you avoid your card being rejected again. And that’s how you’ll get easily robbed before you even call for help.
Another trend that is now catching pace is situations where criminals hang around ATM lobbies and wait for bank customers coming to withdraw money from the ATM. Once they have withdrawn the money, they strike and rob them of the liquid cash. They can also go ahead and force the customers to withdraw more money from the ATM then disappear into thin air.
The good news, however, is that banks are putting in place safety measures to ensure customers who frequent ATMs to make their withdrawals are safe. Banks have increased security manpower at ATMS as well as making sure that ATM lobbies are well lit.
Banks have also installed Cameras at all ATM outlets countrywide in their quest to ensure criminals don’t get away but instead can be traced when such theft cases are reported. Some banks, such as Barclays Bank, are installing new cameras at eye level with the user (as opposed to old ones installed overhead). This ensures that when the user is keying in PIN and making withdrawals the camera is capturing their faces which can later be used for facial recognition in the event of robbery.
Another security measure implemented by most banks include linking ATM transactions with customers’ mobile phones so that any transaction done is reflected via a text message prompt. Another key milestone achieved by Barclays Bank is their anti-skimming security system aimed at ensuring customers’ funds are safe.
YOUR ROLE TO PLAY
As much as banks are spending large resources in ensuring your funds are safe, you too have a role to play. You should report loss of card or incidents of such crime to the respective bank with immediate effect. You should also be on the lookout for theft tricks such as card swapping where criminals will distract you as you enter your PIN then they quickly swap your card. Finally, one thing you might not be aware of is that every time you use your Master Card at Point of Sales terminals you’re compromising your financial details. This calls for you to be extra careful where you choose to pay your bills using your card.