Debit Card No-No's

05/14/2014




Local law enforcement recently sent a fraud alert, warning consumers to be careful using debit cards in certain places. This warning comes after skimmer machines were discovered on gas pumps at several local stations. The Lee County Sheriff’s office urges people to think twice before using debit cards at the following locations: 

  • Online – Hackers and vulnerable websites are two reasons you should avoid using your debit card online. If your card number is stolen and used, the money comes directly out of your checking account and it could take weeks, if not longer, to get it back.
  • Restaurants – When using a debit card at a restaurant, you give up control of your debit card and trust your personal information will be protected. Although most servers may be trustworthy, you may not want to risk getting that unscrupulous server, who secretly brings a handheld card skimmer to work.
  • Big Ticket Items – It’s safer to use a credit card when purchasing expensive items such as electronics, vacation rentals, entertainment tickets, etc.. That’s because you can dispute a credit card purchase after a purchase. Again, with a debit card, the money comes directly out of your checking account. 
  • Gas Stations – Fuel pumps are a favorite target for card skimming thieves as mentioned above. The devices are used to fraudulently collect credit and debit card numbers and they can be difficult to spot. 
  • Suspicious Looking ATMs – Just like at gas stations, skimmers can be attached to ATMs so it’s important to take a good look at the ATM before you use it. If anything looks suspicious, just walk away.

If you have any questions about using your debit card, give us a call at 461-5999 or stop in the bank and we’d be more than happy to help.