Skimming: Spying on payment card data on the rise

Due to the current increase in the number of cases, the police are warning against skimming. Fraudsters steal account data by reading payment card data.

Recently, cases of skimming have increased again. The areas of Salzgitter, the district of Peine and the district of Wolfenbüttel are currently particularly affected. In a press release, the Salzgitter police warn of the fraud. In numerous useful tips, the officials also explain how you can protect yourself.

The police use three different, current cases to illustrate the real danger. So be careful when withdrawing money from ATMs. However, account statement printers or other terminals are not safe from manipulation either, as the police continue to inform.

“1. Case: At an ATM located in Wolfenbüttel in the Harztorwall, the perpetrators had on 14.640 .515 in the period between 09: -14: 30 Clock mounted a camera on the ATM. This would make it possible to enter the PIN.

2. Case: At another ATM, which is also located in Wolfenbüttel in the Harztorwall, the perpetrators had on 23.04.

, 09: 00 Watch-25.04.2022, 08: 30 Clock, an unknown device installed in the area of ​​the card slot. This was obviously installed with the intention of reading the data from the money card used.

3. Case: Another crime scene is in Salzgitter on Fischzug street. At an ATM, the perpetrators had in the period from 04.04.2016, 18: 25 Watch-06.04.2016, 12: 12 Clock, a camera installed in order to obviously be able to read out the PIN entered by the user here as well. Furthermore, a circuit board was inserted into the card reader, which obviously made it possible to read out the card data.”

Procedure of the perpetrators with skimming

The perpetrators are quite tricky with skimming. Your goal is to get both the electronic card data and the PIN. The scammers then use the illegally skimmed data to make copies of payment cards. Using these duplicate cards, it is possible to withdraw money from the victims’ accounts.

But before this can happen, the perpetrators have to do some preparatory work. To do this, they install a manipulated card reader or even a completely new front panel in front of the card slot of the ATM. In order not to attract attention, the manipulated card readers have already been optically adapted to the model of the cash dispenser with the same color and sticker.

Skimming with manipulated card slot Source: Police Salzgitter

Cheating as a user difficult to discover

The inserted bank card should then move on through the illegal reader to the original card reader. Here, the account data is read out and saved without affecting the operation of the ATM in any way. The customer usually doesn’t notice anything about the manipulation. He rarely becomes suspicious.

Ultimately, it’s about getting the PIN. For this purpose, typing in the PIN is recorded with a camera or a camera phone. There are various locations where scammers can install a (mini) camera or a camera phone.

Various mounting options for the hidden cameras

On the one hand, above the PIN -keyboard, a panel or camera bar specially designed for the type of cash dispenser can be attached. The camera or the camera phone is then able to record all PIN entries on the keyboard over a longer period of time.

On the other hand, cameras have been installed on the side of a manipulated brochure holder or on the ceiling hidden in a dummy smoke detector. There are other ways of spying out the PIN either by using a deceptively real-looking dummy keyboard or by using an add-on card reader with an integrated camera.


Camera Source: Police Salzgitter

Police protection against Skimming

    Keep your access data safe and always separate the bank card from the PIN.

  • If you find anything strange about the machine, do not use it.
  • Always cover one hand via the input field if you enter your PIN with the other hand.

  • Check the machine. If you find scammers have made changes or installed other unknown items, inform the bank or the police.
  • If possible, avoid ATMs located outside, as these can often be manipulated for skimming.

  • Entering the bank will never requires a PIN, be careful here.

  • Should you suspect that your card has been read, you are urgently requested to use the to have the nationwide blocking emergency call 116116 blocked. In any case, inform the police and file a complaint.

    116116About Antonia Frank

    Antonia has been

  • since January Author at the Invisibility Cloak. She started out with book reviews. In the meantime, she prefers to write about legal topics, such as P2P cases, but she also takes up other Internet topics, such as cybercrime. Her interests are mainly related to literature.


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