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Protecting yourself from ATM scammers

Fraud at automated teller machines is a threat globally and Cayman is not immune.
In fact, the RCIPS Financial Crimes Unit notes an increase in international scammers targeting this country, especially close to Christmas.
But officers at the FCU says the best defense starts with awareness.

Since 2014 roughly $150,000 has been swiped by ATM scammers in Cayman.

Detective Rueben Foster says, “We have seen a gradual increase in this type of activity. we have seen persons coming on island as visitors and actually they have come for the purpose of actually perpetrating this type of fraud.”
Both Mr Foster and detective Khalesiah Barboram believe consumers can make life more difficult for scammers by being alert.

“When you go to the ATM machine you check your surroundings as well because there could be persons there trying to have conversation with you just to capture your information,” Ms Barboram says.

Scammers set out to skim valuable personal information which they then use to steal money and most times its through the ATM they pull pin information to effect their crime.

“When they affix devices to the machine they appear very legitimate so you have to be very careful because at times it is the same colour the ATM machine is,” she explained.

Last November five scammers from various countries were held for ATM fraud in Cayman and this year one ATM suspect was held.

“We have been very successful so far and i hope we continue in that vein in most cases we have been able to capture them within a day or two of the activity being discovered,” Mr Foster says.

Apart from monitoring your ATM surroundings it is also equally important to check your financial statements closely to detect any suspicious transactions and report it to the bank and police as soon as possible.

About the author

Reshma Ragoonath

Reshma Ragoonath

Reshma Ragoonath is a Trinidadian journalist with 16 years media experience with a strong background in print with her most recent stint at The Cayman Reporter. She has a BA in Mass Communications, as well as, an Associate degree in Journalism and Public Relations.

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