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Secure Usage of Credit & Debit Card/ATM

Security Threats

Identity theft

The fraudulent acquisition and use of person’s private identifying information, usually for financial gain. It can be divided into two broad categories :

  • Application fraud

Application fraud happens when a criminal uses stolen or fake documents to open an account in someone else's name. Criminals may try to steal documents such as utility bills and bank statements to build up useful personal information.

  • Account takeover

Account takeover happens when a criminal tries to take over another person's account, first by gathering information about the intended victim, and then contacting their card issuer while impersonating the genuine cardholder, and asking for the mail to be redirected to a new address. The criminal then reports the card loss and asks for a replacement to be sent.

Credit card fraud

Credit card fraudis commited by making use of credit/debit card of others for obtaining goods orservices. The threat emerge due to stealing of information like Credit card number, PIN number,password etc. Theft of cards and cloning of cards are also employed to commit such frauds.

Hackers use complex techniques like Phishing, Skimming etc. to gain credit card information from innnocent users.


Phishing is a way of attempting to acquire information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication. Phishing is typically carried out by e-mail spoofing or instant messaging and it often directs users to enter details at a fake website whose look and feel are almost identical to the legitimate one.


Skimming is the theft of credit card / Debit card information. Thief can procure victim's credit card number using basic methods such as photocopying receipts or more advanced methods such as using a small electronic device (skimmer) to swipe and store hundreds of victim’s credit card numbers. Common scenarios for skimming are restaurants or bars where the skimmer has possession of the victim's credit card and makes note of card details for further use.


It is one of the method of  social engineering over the telephone system, most often using features facilitated by Voice over IP (VoIP), to gain access to private personal and financial information from the public for the purpose of financial reward. The term is a combination of “voice” and “phishing”.

Social Engineering

Social engineering involves gaining trust – hence the fraudster poses as a member of staff or even security guard. The fraudster would then ask the customer to check the card for damages. The fraudster would have gained confidence from his prey using various tactics such as offering assistance to the customer who perhaps would have tried to use the ATM without success or perhaps the customer who is not familiar with use of ATM machine and requires assistance.

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