The `seeding method´: A new way to steal your PIN and bank card

The `seeding method´: A new way to steal your PIN and bank card atm image pixabay

The National Police warns of the ‘seeding method’ used to steal PINs from ATMs. It involves changing the victim’s card, after managing to see their bank codes. Withdrawing money from a cash machine is a common action, which only takes a few seconds to easily obtain a certain amount of money. However, those few seconds are enough for thieves who use the seeding method to get hold of the PIN code.

How do they do it

This was explained by María Fernández, spokesperson for the National Police on the TVE programme ‘Mejor Contigo’ “They are looking for an elderly person who is withdrawing money from the ATM, one of the robbers observes their codes and passes them on by mobile phone to another person, who enters and makes the change”.

When this first part is ready, the first thief distracts the victim in any way, while the other person approaches the ATM and swipes the card, so that he already has all the banking elements to steal the money. The ‘seeding method’ is simple and effective for the thieves. It takes them seconds to steal your card from under your nose and straight out of the machine.

In general, this type of robbery tends to be carried out on elderly or vulnerable victims, although this does not always have to be the case. Therefore, the police spokeswoman recommends that caution should always be exercised, especially if there are strangers around.

What to do if you are a victim

If you find yourself a victim of this type of crime, contact your bank immediately to cancel the card and report to your nearest police station to make a dencuncia of the crime. Most cashpoints have video cameras aimed at the machine, hopefully, the culprits will have been recorded carrying out the ‘seeding method’.


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