How To Avoid Credit Card Skimmers
Be careful when swiping your credit card, or skimmers could swipe your funds and sensitive information. It is more important than ever since the rise of online shopping.
We link our cards to apps and platforms that may leave our money vulnerable to cyberattacks. Fortunately, you can protect your finances by following a few simple steps.
This article will discuss how you can avoid credit card skimmers. It will include precautions for ATM withdrawals and online transactions.
What is a credit card skimmer?
A skimmer is a device that attaches to credit card readers, ATMs, and other gadgets that accept card payments. It blends with existing equipment to fool people into using them.
For example, it could look like the casing of a card reader. It covers the keypad so that it can take passcodes from customers as they swipe their credit cards.
As our gadgets shrank, so did credit card skimmers. These new devices are shimmers that slip inside credit card readers. Yet, they have the same function.
How to beat credit card skimmers
Our world is facing an unprecedented economic crisis, so more people would try methods of stealing money from others. Keep this in mind while using credit cards outdoors.
Use ATMs easily seen by the public. Even better, use ones inside stores or banks. Also, inspect ATMs before inserting cards into them.
Check if they have suspicious marks, such as damaged card readers, crooked graphics, or miscolored parts. Compare your ATM with the other beside it.
For example, avoid that machine if its reader does not flash while the others do. Also, be wary of ATMs outside banks.
According to FICO, 60% of card skimming happens at privately-owned machines. Moreover, press on the keypad before inserting your card.
See if it is hard to press the buttons or if they feel thick. Those could be signs that your ATM has a false keypad. Also, cover your hand while entering your passcode.
It would keep a hidden camera from recording your keystrokes. Moreover, do not let people walk away with your card as much as possible.
Restaurants have mobile readers nowadays so that customers can swipe their cards themselves. Also, you could download an app to avoid credit card skimmers.
Search “skimmer scanner” on the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store. Then, select from the top-rated options. These apps spot credit card skimmers by checking Bluetooth transmissions.
More importantly, trust your gut. Avoid it if you feel that your ATM is at a suspicious location. You can probably find a safer location nearby.
How to avoid e-skimmers
People shop online nowadays, so people have adjusted their methods. As a result, some websites have hidden malware called e-skimmers.
They could gather your credit card information at the checkout page. In response, you should choose your online merchants carefully.
It is best to do most of your shopping at reputable platforms like Amazon. On the other hand, you may apply for a virtual credit card.
As a result, hackers would only reach the virtual card, not your main account. You may also pay with apps like Apple Pay, Google Wallet, or Samsung Pay.
They have security features that keep you safe from credit card skimmers. Even better, you do not need to pull out your plastic card.
Online banking apps also let you check your balance anytime to see if your account made unknown transactions. Also, you could activate alerts for every payment.
If you suspect credit card skimmers accessed your account, call your bank as soon as possible. Explain the details regarding your situation.
In response, your bank could cancel your current card, send a new one, and conduct an investigation. Also, you should report the incident to the authorities.
You should also check out Inquirer Tech for more useful tips. It contains more news and updates about the latest tech trends.
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