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Beware, anyone can fall victim to a skimming scam

Beware, anyone can fall victim to a skimming scam

(Scams, Identity Theft, Credit and Money Matters) Permanent link

We have warned you before about skimming scams, and how hard it is to detect the small bits of plastic on ATMs. Anyone can fall victim and not realize it until after the thieves have racked up large purchases using the stolen card information. This is includes our state’s top law enforcer, U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan. She told KING 5 that:

her bank account was robbed in August after thieves stole her debit card information.

“When it happens to you…you really feel victimized and you think, ‘Boy, I wish I’d been smarter that time,'” she said.

ATM “skimmers” are sophisticated enough that they can even trick someone like Durkan, the chair of the Justice Department’s Cybercrime Subcommittee.


But not all the recent news about skimming scams is bad news. The Tri-City Herald reported that:

A judge set bail Tuesday at $150,000 for an Issaquah man accused of attaching a card-skimming device to a Pasco bank's ATM, and said he wouldn't go lower because of the number of affected citizens.

And, earlier this summer, a scammer was sentenced to federal prison for victimizing at least 100 people. According to The Seattle Times:

a 37-year-old Renton man has been sentenced to five years in prison for stealing nearly a quarter of a million dollars by skimming ATMs.


Posted by Sarah Lane All Consuming Blog Moderator at 09/07/2011 04:35:54 PM | 

I thought that all ATM machines had cameras on them , and sensors ?

How is it even possible in this day and age for someone to attach a skimming device to an ATM and not be detected ?
Posted by: Aubrie ( Email ) at 9/19/2011 6:42 AM

I recently received a letter from Credit International Corporation regarding a Small Claims Judgment case #88508. The judgment was awarded 12/18/2008 to me in the amount of $2500. I know nothing of this matter. Please tell me what action of should take. Thank you.
Posted by: Josephine S. Fast ( Email ) at 9/19/2011 10:15 AM

I try to examine the ATM before I insert my card, but the skimmers are nicely manufactured these days. I guess the best advice is to try to use the same ATM all time, that way you have a better chance of noticing if it's different.
Posted by: Chris ( Email ) at 10/13/2011 9:18 AM

I received and email and I believe it is a scam and would like to report it to the authorities. Please let me know if you can investigate on this scam and that no other people falls for this. Also, what we should do aside from deleting and putting in spam folder.
I am attaching the email to this comment.

Sir Attached document is for you to verify the man called Mr.Jones,whom came to our office this morning that you give him, permission that your fund should be wired directly into this bank account in China,please update us if you are aware of his coming here today, why we called you is to avoid your fund been divert into wrong account. We need your urgent attention, or you can reach us on this direct telephone number+234-8083247770 I wait to hear from you. Thanks, Dr.John Pedro Head Payment Officer(TT) Central Bank Of Nigeria

[BLOG MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: The Federal Trade Commission is the agency with jurisdiction to receive and investigate spam email complaints. You contact them at:]
Posted by: Ester T. Delen ( Email ) at 12/9/2011 2:11 PM

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