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Using an ATM? Know these dos and don’ts

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Using an ATM? Know these dos and don’ts

Gone are those days when we had to queue up outside the bank to withdraw cash. Today, we have the debit card. All we have to do is simply go to an ATM or an Automated Teller Machine, swipe your debit card, punch in the PIN number and the amount details, and get your cash out. What’s more, you also have options to transfer money using an ATM.

It is an extremely popular medium. Today, there are over 1.6 lakh ATMs and over 40 crore debit cards in circulation in the country, as per RBI data. That said, there are also numerous reports of ATM frauds. Here are some things to keep in mind while using the ATM:

1. Make sure there is no suspicious movement of people around the ATM centre. ATMs are supposed to have guards to ensure security. Nonetheless, it always better to take precaution. You should also make sure you have adequate privacy. Do not allow another person to remain in the ATM centre while you conduct your transaction.

2. Make sure there are no extra devices attached to the ATM. If there is one, please alert security. Recently there were reports that cameras and pin copying devices attached to ATMs to steal your passwords. They were then used to conduct fraudulent transactions later.

3. Your PIN or Personal Identification Number is very important. It makes the difference between a secure transaction and a non-secure one. So, never write down your PIN number anywhere – even if it is not visible to others. Some even write it down on their cards. That only exposes you great risks.

4. Most ATM centres are surrounded by glass. Anyone standing outside may see you punching your PIN details. So, while entering your pin, please cover the keypad to protect it.

5. After the completion of your transaction, collect your card and ensure that the welcome screen is displayed on the ATM. This is to ensure that your transaction account period has ended. If it has not, the next customer may be able to conduct a transaction through your bank account even without swiping the card.

6. Also double-check the SMS alert sent by your bank to confirm the transaction. This will help you re-check the amount you withdrew, your bank balance and any additional charges imposed for the transaction.

7. It has happened to most of us. Your card could be held back by a detective ATM machine. In such a case, don’t panic. Just call the bank that operates the ATM centre. Also inform your bank and ensure a new card is sent.

8. Never ever hand over your card to anyone to seek help. This is especially so with strangers.

9. You must report to the bank immediately if there are any unauthorized transactions or if your ATM card is stolen. The bank will disable the card immediately and cancel the transactions.

10. Your bank may regularly send you a new card, or you may have asked for a replacement. This requires you to destroy your old card. While doing so, cut it into four pieces through the black magnetic strip after it expires. Otherwise, it could still be used.

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