Neighbourhood Watch: Protect your pin (2 July 2010)

posted 5 Jul 2010, 13:14 by Dawn Grove

Police are urging people using credit and debit cards to take precautions when using their pin numbers.

The warning follows an incident at midday on Sunday 27 June at the Tesco store in Heath Hayes, Cannock.

A woman returned to her car after shopping in the store and put her bag on the passenger seat of her car. She was then approached by a man who placed a map on the bonnet of another car and asked for help with directions. It is believed a second offender then stole the woman's debit card.

Police are appealing for any witnesses to this incident to contact Staffordshire Police, quoting reference number 1095 of 27 June.

Fraud investigator at Chase divisional crime bureau, PC Neil Powell, said: "Unfortunately this type of crime, where offenders look over the shoulder of people using their credit or debit cards to see their pin number and then one person distracts a victim while the other steals the cards, is quite widespread nationally.

"We would urge everyone using credit or debit cards in any situation - whether at an ATM, in a store, restaurant or pub, to take precautions when using their cards, ensuring that no one sees you tapping in your pin number.

"Make sure no one is looking over your shoulder and use your free hand to cover over the hand you use to enter your pin.

"Examine an ATM closely to make sure there is nothing stuck in it or in the card slot. If there is, don't use it and report it to your bank and the police.

"When withdrawing cash from an ATM, don't let anyone see how much you've withdrawn and put it immediately in a purse or wallet and place securely in your bag or pocket before moving away from the machine.

"Cancel your card immediately if you have difficulty getting your card out of the ATM or if it is lost or stolen.

If you need to reply by email click on my address here:

Bev Rounds 
Citizen Focus Project Team 
Neighbourhood Watch 
Tel: 01785 232469