Protect Yourself from Shoulder Surfers at ATMs

(Memphis) Memphis police are searching for a woman they say is stealing money from bank accounts, just as customers leave the ATM. 

Police say Christy Randle is a “shoulder surfer.”

“It seems so normal, cause people stand in line at ATMs all the time,” says Memphis resident Courtney Thomas.

Blending in is exactly what police say Randle likes to do.

Police say she stands at ATMs, pretends to wait in line, when in reality, she’s staring over customers’ shoulders and stealing their PIN.

When they walk away, police say Randle quickly walks up and steals money from their account.
    
How does it work? 

Police say many ATMs offer a prompt such as, “Do you have another transaction?” 

If the customer, doesn’t hit no, or cancel out, it leaves shoulder surfers an opportunity to complete an additional transaction under the customer’s account.

According to MPD officials, Randle has a number of outstanding warrants for fraudulent use of debit and credit cards.  

Apparently, she’s not alone. 

Since January, police say there have been 767 ATM credit card frauds reported.

So how do you protect yourself? 

Local resident Michael Cosey says he avoids stand alone ATMs, “I go inside buildings, hotels or banks or something.”

“I try to for the most part, stay away from secluded ATMs, especially if they’re in the dark,” adds Thomas.

Experts also say customers should look for red flags at the ATM, like if their card sticks, or there’s an odd configuration.

It’s also important to check the face of the machine.

Look for anything out of the ordinary like a loose card reader, or one that’s a different color from the ATM.

It may seem simple, but always protect your pin.

This includes using one hand to shield those digits. 

It’s also a good idea to get in the habit of reviewing your statements to see if there’s a transaction that’s out-of-place.

Police are asking anyone with information about Randle call Crime Stoppers at 528-CASH.

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