Card skimming occurs while you are making a payment or withdrawal (at a restaurant, garage, ATM or retailer). The criminal either has direct access to your card (to process the payment) or the device is attached to the slot of the ATM. All Absa ATMs have Jitter technology that makes your card shudder slightly when you insert it into an ATM as an added safety feature.
This is in place so that if a card skimming device is present, it will only capture scrambled data. Card skimming devices are generally smaller than a deck of cards, and are hand-held (often fitting snugly into the palm of the hand); which is why people are not aware of what is happening until they are defrauded at a later stage.
What can you do to avoid being scammed?
Always keep an eye on your card when making a transaction; and scrutinise your bank statements to ensure that you spot and report irregular transactions that may occur on your account.
What should you do if your card is skimmed?
If your card has been skimmed, you need to contact your bank immediately and ensure that your card is blocked. This will ensure that the criminals can’t do any more transactions using your account details. The bank may ask you to:
- Change your PIN
- Cancel the card (and issue you a new one)
- Sign an affidavit or provide additional information (depending on the circumstances surrounding the skimming)
Will I be reimbursed?
Depending on your bank or the means used to remove the funds from your account, your bank may reimburse you. Each case is individually assessed and circumstances of the loss are considered to determine if any claims will be refunded.
If a 'fraudulent' transaction has taken place where your card is used together with your PIN, the transaction is usually identified as authentic, and you will not be reimbursed. Never keep your PIN number and card together; rather memorise your PIN.