Our APD Fraud Detectives are reminding us to be aware of "Shoulder Surfers" who are lurking about to obtain your PIN numbers. This type of crime commonly occurs at an ATM, but can happen in a store, a sales cart, or just about any point of sale location where you are required to enter a PIN. The Los Angeles City Attorney's Office put together an excellent information and awareness sheet on shoulder surfing (pictured above).
Some "Shoulder Surfing" Prevention Tips:
- Always be aware of your surroundings. Look for persons or occupied cars near the ATM. If you are not comfortable...leave and go to another machine!
- Shield your PIN entry with your other hand.
- Stand close to the machine when conducting your transaction.
- Use ATM's located inside a bank or convenience store.
- Check, look, pull or tug on the card slot, looking for attached skimming devices.
- COMPLETE your transaction. Simply removing your card may not complete or cancel a transaction. Failing to do so leaves you vulnerable if someone has obtained your PIN.
- Use the buddy system when you can. Bring a friend, relative, or co-worker to watch your back.
- Always report suspicious persons or activity to the police. See Something, Say Something!