Money Smarts Blog

How to Protect Yourself from ATM Fraud

Apr 29, 2024 || IHMVCU

Man in black with laptop at ATM

Fraudsters are becoming more sophisticated every day and that means scam technology is getting smarter all the time. But there are a lot of ways you can protect yourself along with your cards and accounts. 

First things first - understanding how these scams work. Nationally over the last year, there’s been an uptick in ATM fraud using skimmers and shimmers.

What are ATM skimmers: Devices that are placed on the front of an automatic teller machine (ATM) to capture your card number, PIN, card holder’s name and expiration date. They’re usually placed over or near the machine’s real card reader and blend in with the machine, making it hard to tell whether or not the machine has been compromised.

What are ATM shimmers: These function similarly to skimming devices but are instead located inside the machine’s real card reader.

If you suspect that your debit or credit card information has been compromised, it's important to act quickly to minimize any potential damage.

Here are some steps you can take to help secure your cards and accounts:

1. Monitor your account: Keep a close eye on your account activity for any unauthorized transactions. If you notice any suspicious charges, report them to IHMVCU immediately.

2. Contact IHMVCU: Immediately reach out to IHMVCU through our secure chat, by calling 800-722-0333 or visit your nearest branch to report any suspicious activity on your account. Inform them about the suspected fraudulent activity and request that they block your card to prevent further unauthorized transactions.

3. Turn off your IHMVCU card via online banking: Sign into your online or mobile banking account. Click "Card Controls" and accept the Terms and Conditions. If you do not have an online or mobile banking account set up, you'll need to do that before enabling Card Controls. This free service allows you complete versatility and control over your card transactions. Turn your card on and off, block certain types of merchants, certain types of transactions, and even set a spending limit.

4. Request a new card: If you had fraud on your account or used an IHMVCU ATM in the last few weeks, you can request a new card with a new number. This will prevent any further unauthorized transactions using your compromised card details.

5. Consider fraud alerts or a credit freeze: Depending on the severity of the situation, you may want to consider placing a fraud alert or credit freeze on your credit report to prevent any new accounts from being opened in your name without your consent. You'll need to contact each of the three major credit bureaus individually to request a credit freeze. These bureaus are Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. You can request a credit freeze online, by phone, or by mail.

6. Stay vigilant: Even after taking these steps, remain vigilant about monitoring your financial accounts for any signs of suspicious activity in the future. Regularly review your bank and credit card statements and report any unauthorized transactions promptly.

You should also be on the lookout for scammers trying to take advantage of you by sending text messages and emails claiming they found fraudulent charges on your account. They lure you into sharing your information by encouraging you to click a link or call a number to gain access to your private information.

Remember, IHMVCU will never ask for your personal information, full card or account number or PIN. Text messages coming from our fraud department will always come from a 5-digit phone number, provide detailed information about any suspicious charges and will not ask you to click on a URL.


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