I don't know about you but I go everywhere with my bank and credit cards, using them both to get cash and for virtually every transaction. I am aware of ATMs being targeted by thieves, yet only when I saw this video and read the account of Benjamin Tedesco did it really hit home for me how at risk I am from cleverly hidden, devious technology designed to steal my hard earned money and private credit card details.
Have a look at this short video of what Benjamin saw when he inspected an ATM during a family holiday in Vienna, Austria:
What he managed to pull off, to the benefit of many future customers of that particular ATM, was a credit or debit card skimmer, which is designed to steal your cards. The device is an exact replica of the normal card slot found on an ATM, it has simply been glued over the top of the original 'hole in the wall.'
This sophisticated device has a magnetic strip reader, battery, switch, and control board. Quite satisfied with his discovery, Benjamin posted his video onto YouTube on 19th June 2016, and it became an instant viral hit with millions of views, and even a parody video.
While watching the parody video, Benjamin noticed something else that he had missed. Just above the purple information card over the keypad there is a grey 'lip' that protrudes out. He realized that this was a secret camera, designed to record people's pin code inputs.
When Benjamin compared the ATM in his video with the later recording in the spoof he realized that the grey 'lip' was only present on the earlier video, and hence had been removed. The first image below shows the additional grey strip that conceals a camera. The second image shows the ATM as it's meant to appear, and does in the spoof video.
This all goes to show how dangerous it is to trust in ATMs with our bank accounts. In the future, get into the habit of having a look at anything that seems like it could be removable when you use an ATM. Try and compare it with another one nearby. The best thing to do would be to stick to one or two ATMs that you can get to know as well as the back of your hand, then you will notice anything unusual.
H/T: a; b
Cover image by Deposit Photos