ATM robbery safety under study

Michelle Singletary at the Washington Post reports on methods to thwart ATM robberies. Some, including the reverse PIN (where you enter your PIN backwards to alert law enforcement) have been rumored for years.

The bottom line, she says, is that most robberies don’t happen while your card is in your hand:

Although news reports of ATM customers being robbed might seem frequent, there are few statistics that track ATM robberies in which a victim is compelled to withdraw funds. What evidence there is suggests that the majority of ATM robberies occur after the victim has withdrawn funds, which means an emergency activation system involving the keypad wouldn’t help.

Just remember to be alert of your surroundings, especially at night, and make it from your car to the ATM as quickly as possible. It also helps if you have someone with you.

For more ATM safety advice, quiz yourself at (our own ATM manufacturer) Diebold’s site, or visit’s 10 ATM safety tips.

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