Just when you thought that you and your ATM card data were safe from criminal eyes, Scientific American brings a different sort of threat. This time, the skimmers are inside the machine. Malware within the ATM itself harvests enough data to do some very bad things.
Four Romanian nationals in Florida have been charged in a series of ATM skimmer frauds that targeted banks in New York City, Cicero (near Syracuse), NY, and Rochester, NY. They are charged with, among other things, aggravated identity theft and conspiracy to commit credit card fraud. According to the Syracuse office of the Secret Service, they stole $1.8 million overall.
Video game maker Capcom has partnered with Visa to offer a pre-paid debit card with so many fees that it will shrink your wallet from an E. Honda to a Dhalsim. The hurricane kick of fees, inside.
Why pay people for your own money? Via FatWallet, here’s a big daddy list of all the banks that refund your ATM fees, regardless of who owns the ATM.
With all the concern about unemployed Wall Street sloggers and whether they’ll be able to keep up their leveraged lifestyle, or even get an apartment, this ATM receipt a reader’s coworker found sitting in a Wall Street ATM with a balance of $97,084.23 shows there’s at least one person who is going to be okay. Plus, this guy knows what he’s doing; note how the balance is just under the $100,000 limit for full FDIC coverage.
Reader Drew went out of his way to ensure that he’d be able to get money from ATMs (using his Bank of America card), while on vacation. Despite his best efforts, he learned that a) putting a note on your account saying that you’ll be in England and b) drawing less than the maximum daily amount from your account is still not enough to keep BoA from putting a hold on your account. He’s written in with some advice for other Bank of America customers who are planning on traveling soon…
If you’re the type of person who never uses your ATM card—and we really mean never in this case, you might want to call your bank to find out if there’s a minimum activity threshold to hit to keep it from being deactivated. A reader tried to use her Bank of America ATM card recently and kept getting an “invalid transaction” error at every ATM. She called the number on the back of the card to ask what was going on: “I was told that since I hadn’t used my card in a couple of years it was closed, even though the expiration date is several years in the future, and I hadn’t received any note that suggested I should cut the card up into tiny pieces.”
Johanna deposited a financial aid check from her university into her Chase checking account. She’d done this before without incident, but this time something went wrong.
Reader Keith tried to get $120 from a downtown NYC Chase ATM, but the money door never opened. When he went inside to report the malfunction, the teller told him to go outside and wait. Keith thought he was waiting for someone to come fix the ATM or take his personal information. It turns out that he was just being ignored.
I’m sick of paying ATM fees so I just finished switching to my USAA debit card for my cash money needs. They refund up to $15 of ATM fees per month and don’t charge you any fees for using other people’s ATMs. I’m still keeping my WaMu account but I took my WaMu debit card out of my wallet and just funded my USAA account with some money. Not that I have a problem but I think this will also help reduce petty cash spending. Plus, by using cash more often that means I’m getting more change, and all my coin change goes into my piggy bank (60% full at the moment, looking forward to the day I take it to the Commerce Bank “Penny Arcade” coin-counting machine). With the specter of a recession giving us all wet willies, are you making any changes to your personal finance system?
Reader Jessica is clearly a red-blooded American. She demands service, and above all, LABOR, from her fellow countrymen and -women, even on national holidays, especially on Labor Day.
• The news is not that a data breach at VISA had a data breach that caused consumer’s debit cards to get stolen, it’s that they’re actually finally formally announcing it. “Visa Says ATM Breach May Have Exposed Data” [CT]
We received our happy super fun awesome new Washington Mutual GOLD debit card today.
With debit card fraud on the rise, banks are getting way hardcore about putting stops on accounts if they notice any slight deviation from normal activity. Unfortunately, their customer service desks haven’t kept pace with the uptick.
Joseph is an American student stranded in in Germany after his meagre monies just got jacked via a Citibank security breach, one that Citibank would like to blame him for.