ALERT: Spain’s Civil Guard Warns About ATMs With False Keyboards

THE SPANISH Civil Guard has alerted to a fraud scam that has been taking place this week involving ATM machines.

ATMs are known by a variety of names, including automatic teller machine (ATM), an electronic telecommunications device that enables customers of financial institutions to perform financial transactions, such as cash withdrawals, deposits, transfer funds, or obtaining account information, at any time and without the need for direct interaction with bank staff.

Though very convenient, they sometimes involve risks when using as unfortunately they can be easily manipulated.

The recently detected scam is one that has been used by criminal groups before and is known as a “false keyboard scam” which can involve the loss of money and sometimes the loss of the credit card as well.

This theft occurs when thieves install a fake keyboard on top of the original ATM keyboard. It is practically identical, so it is very difficult to tell them apart and differentiate them from real keyboards.

With the false keyboards, the thieves are able to register the key to the credit card used, clone it and then steal money with it.

The Civil Guard have tweeted the indecent offering the following advice:

If your banking operation is correct but the cashier does not give you the money, please proceed with the following:

a) Check the slot is not covered

b) Beware of “helper” volunteers

c) Call your bank/card

A lot of ATM users already cover the keyboard when punching in their password, in case the security camera has been manipulated, however this security technique doesn’t work with fake keyboards.

The Civil Guard places special emphasis on caution with “volunteer helpers” in these cases. No matter how well intentioned the vast majority of the population may be, if the card or money has become stuck within the machine, the “volunteers” may well be “good Samaritans” in disguise and instead of helping, aim to distract the ATM user in order to ultimately steal the bank card and the victim’s money.


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Written by

Cristina Hodgson

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