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Safety tips when using ATMs

It's important to know how to stay safe when using an ATM


Written by SpunOut | View this authors Twitter page and posted in life


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  • Try to avoid using an ATM alone - either take someone with you or only use an ATM when others are around
  • If possible, avoid using an ATM after dark - if you must, choose one that is well lit up
  • If you see anything that makes you uncomfortable or anyone who looks suspicious, do not use that ATM; either use an ATM at a different location or come back later and notify the Gardaí
  • Have your access card and any other documents you need ready when you approach an ATM; fumbling with a wallet or purse makes you easy game for a thief
  • If someone else is using the ATM avoid standing right behind him or her - give them enough space to conduct their transaction in privacy
  • Even while using the ATM, stay alert to your surroundings
  • Look up and around every few seconds while transacting your business
  • Protect your personal identification number (PIN)
  • Do not enter your PIN if anyone else can see the screen
  • Shield your pin from onlookers by using your body
  • When your transaction is finished, be sure you have your card and your receipt, then leave immediately
  • Avoid counting or otherwise displaying large amounts of cash
  • As you leave, keep a look out, and be alert for anything or anyone who appears suspicious
  • If you think you are being followed go to an area with a lot of people and call the Gardaí

Take care while shopping

  • Do not flash large sums of money at the checkout, if you do it will make you an easy target for a possible pickpocket

  • When you are at the supermarket don't leave your bag or purse unattended in the shopping trolley, it would be very easy for someone to walk by and pick it up
  • Frequently when people are shopping they may set down the items that they have already bought, and do not pay them any attention; this makes it very easy for someone to walk by and pick up your purchase.
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Published January 4th, 2013
Last updated June 19th, 2018
Tags safety
Can this be improved? Contact editor@spunout.ie if you have any suggestions for this article.

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