|What is Skimming?|
Skimming takes place when criminals copy information contained on your bank card's magnetic stripe and use it for unauthorized purchases, to make illegal cash withdrawals, or in the production of counterfeit cards.
How does it happen? A legitimate electronic card reader, or "skimmer", is used with cash registers and/or credit card machines to gather the information that is encoded in the magnetic stripe. This may include the cardholder's name, address, telephone number, card number, credit limit and PIN number.
When does skimming happen? There are generally three places your confidential information can become compromised:
Protect yourself by being aware! Keep an eye on your credit card when you hand it over for payment. Pay attention to the look of your favorite ATM machine - has it changed? Check your receipts against your statements every month. Does everything match up? If you find an unfamiliar transaction, report the crime to the police and your financial institution! Finally, monitor your credit.