Would You Have Spotted the Fraud?

From KrebsonSecurity:

Pictured below is what’s known as a skimmer, or a device made to be affixed to the mouth of an ATM and secretly swipe credit and debit card information when bank customers slip their cards into the machines to pull out money. Skimmers have been around for years, of course, but thieves are constantly improving them, and the device pictured below is a perfect example of that evolution.

This particular skimmer was found Dec. 6, 2009, attached to the front of a Citibank ATM in Woodland Hills, Calif. Would you have been able to spot this?


  1. I heard about these a while ago. Now when ever I use an ATM machine, I punch or kick the card reader a couple of times first, to be sure it’s not a skimmer.

  2. Something like this appeared on several local bank machines one friday afternoon, along with a very reassuring and official-looking note from the bank about improved security devices. Of course, I’m no sucker! I just went the whole weekend without access to cash – only to find out, of corse, that it was totally legit.

  3. The braille lettering on the skimmer is a nice touch, though. If it had said “Do Not Use”, only sighted folks would have been scammed!

  4. IF you observe correct security protocol at an ATM, even if there is a skimmer on the machine you will not get hacked. The skimmer is is only to get your mag stripe info. There is also a camera that is looking at the keypad necessary to capture your PIN. Cover the keypad with one hand and you are clear.

  5. In this day and age most ATM portals have a full video screen capable of graphics including the ability to show fucking commercials. Gag.

    BUT – why don’t these banks use that same video screen to show a picture of what the card slot and ATM is supposed to look like and WARN you to be on the lookout for weird appendages to the card reader slot on the ATM you are using?

    Rocket surgery? My luck, the day they snap the picture it will have the reader in place.

  6. Sure, the cover-the-keypad-with-your-hand approach works IF you don’t have your PIN written on the back of that hand. D’oh!

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