ATM Skimmers Breach Another Machine

The new round of skimming this weekend — initially reported to be the residual effect of last year’s skimming operation, is now believed to be due to a breach of a third ATM machine. DBS Bank officials are keeping the location and details private while investigation is ongoing.

Paraphernalia seized from two suspects in the DBS Bank ATM skimming incident.

DBS reimbursed almost S$ 1 Million (US$ 773,224) to 696 affected customers last January, and $23,000 (US$ 18,348) to 17 customers this week. Two machines at Singapore’s busy shopping district were tampered by the thieves last year. Three suspects were caught last month and were charged with possession of equipment for replicating ATM cards. DBS issued a statement in addition to their initial press release last Thursday.

On Sunday, the bank was alerted to unauthorised ATM withdrawals by 17 customers after they received real-time SMS alerts. After we were informed of this, we were able, through our customer analytics, to establish common patterns amongst the affected customers. From there, we now believe that a different ATM has been compromised at around the same time of the Bugis skimming. We are unable to disclose further details, as this may jeopardise the ongoing investigation.

The bank deactivated the cards of customers who were at risk of unauthorised ATM withdrawals and issued new cards. No new skimming  incidents have been reported so far. DBS enacted new security measures to curb further incidents, such as disabling of ATM card usage overseas, SMS alerts for suspicious overseas transactions and SMS alerts for local withdrawals and payments above a certain threshold.

Always be on the lookout for card skimming devices on ATMs, check for the vibrating function and blinking light in the ATM card slot. Cover your hand when entering your PIN, and keep your PIN secure by changing it regularly and using complex combinations.