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North Yorkshire police warn over cash point crime.


9:15am 26th January 2011

Police have renewed their warning to cash machine customers after a card-cloning device was found in Bedale.

On Saturday afternoon (22 January)  two members of the public attempted to use the cash machine at the HSBC Bank at 33 Market Place, Bedale.

They became suspicious after finding a plastic device covering the card slot and contacted the police. Officers recovered a device covering the front of the machine which will be subjected to forensic tests.

The devices work by fixing a ‘dummy’ card slot over the machine which takes a copy of your bank card. A small camera focused on the key-pad then records your pin number. The thieves are then able to make a replica of your card and have the pin number to go with it.

Police have renewed their warning to customers to be on their guard when using cash machines.

DC Karen Barugh who is investigating the incidents said:

“It’s important that customers remain vigilant at all cash machines, not just those in Bedale.  Criminals use increasingly sophisticated technology to make exact replicas of your bank cards. It is highly likely that they will target other towns.

“Always cover your hand when entering your pin number and check the slot for anything unusual or suspicious, it may appear to have been tampered with or have something stuck over the card reader or key pad, look out for signs of glue or tape.

“If in doubt, don’t use the machine, don’t try to remove the device  and report your concerns to the police immediately.”

If you believe you have any information about suspicious activity around the Bedale cash machine or to report a suspect device, please call police on 0845 60 60 247. 

Police have issued the following advice to bank customers:

1) Protect your PIN by standing close to the machine and shielding the key pad with your other hand.

2) Check to see if anything looks unusual or suspicious about the cash machine. If it appears to have anything stuck onto the card slot or key pad, do not use it. Cancel the transaction and walk away. Never try to remove suspicious devices, report them to the police immediately.

3) Be cautious if strangers offer to help you at a cash machine, even if your card is stuck or you're having difficulties. Don't allow anyone to distract you.

4) Where possible, use a cash machine which is in clear view and well lit.

5) Check that other people in the queue are a reasonable distance away from you.

6) Keep your PIN secret. Never reveal it to anyone, even someone who claims to be calling from your bank or a police officer.

7) Avoid opening your purse, bag or wallet when you are in the queue. Put your money away immediately.

8) Regularly check your account balance and bank statements, and report any discrepancies to your bank immediately.

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