ATM skimmer may have been used to access customer bank accounts
PORT ORCHARD — Nicholas Walker had no idea he had been robbed until Sunday when he went to buy a pair of new boots.
“I went to go buy some and I decided to check my balance and I noticed that there was a lot of money missing,” Walker said Monday.
Walker believes his card was skimmed about three weeks ago at a Navy Federal Credit Union ATM in Port Orchard.
More than $600 were gone in a split second.
“The moment I realized, I was freaking out so I called my bank and immediately canceled my cards,” Walker said. “There was obviously some kind of skimming device on it but unless you’re looking for it you’re not going to know it’s there.”
Walker is not alone.
At least eight other people may have also had their bank accounts drained
Most say they used this same NFCU ATM and the amount withdrawn was the same $603.
A Facebook page was started to help spread the word.
Although apparently skimmed inPport Orchard, cash was withdrawn from ATMs all over, including a Bank of America in Seattle.
"It is pretty difficult to spot and, as technology gets better, the skimmers get thinner and smaller and easier to hide,” Seattle police spokesman Patrick Mihaud said.
Detective Don Carroll with the U.S. Secret Service Electronic Crimes Task Force says the skimmer captures the card number and a tiny spy cam, also attached to the ATM, allows the thief to get you pin number.
"They will run this gift card through that card reader/writer and transfer the information they got from the ATM skimmer onto this card,” Carroll said.
Navy Federal issued a statement Monday saying, in part;
“Our members bear no liability for any fraudulent transactions on their accounts. We continuously monitor their accounts for suspicious activity, and we encourage our members to contact us should they observe any unusual account activity.”
Walker recommends everyone take a proactive approach.
"If possible, I would go to your bank to withdraw money. I know the ATM is quicker but the bank is safer. That's what I learned from this,” Walker said.
If you think your card has been compromised, call your bank. Then call the police.