FAIRFIELD, California – Fairfield Police are warning residents to be on the lookout for credit card skimmers after an alert citizen spotted a suspicious device attached to an ATM last week.
The Citizen reported an officer in the 1400 block of Travis Boulevard after noticing a mirror with wires attached to a machine at an outdoor ATM.
The officer discovered it was a skimming device disguised as an ATM’s security mirror, with the mirror obscuring a pinhole camera designed to record bank transactions, card numbers and PINs of customers, Fairfield Police said.
Police advise ATM users to consider the security of an ATM before using it. Always assume someone is looking, whether over the shoulder or through a hidden camera, and always cover your hand when entering a PIN, police said.
Common locations for skimmers include gas stations and convenience store ATMs, although credit union and bank ATMs are also subject to skimming attacks.
Criminals frequently set up skimmers on ATMs that are not located in high-traffic areas because they don’t want to be seen setting them up or collecting the collected data, police said. Indoor ATMs are generally safer to use than outdoor ones, as criminals can gain access to outdoor machines without being seen.