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Credit card skimmers and ATMs, gas stations, and now POS machines

December 18, 2012

As if retailers and banks didn't have enough data security concerns when it comes to regulatory compliance and asset protection strategies, new technology allowing credit card skimming has appeared in point-of-sale (POS) machines.

As if retailers and banks didn’t have enough data security concerns when it comes to regulatory compliance and asset protection strategies, new technology allowing credit card skimming has appeared in point-of-sale (POS) machines. These terminals are replicated to resemble common debit POS devices, and can be created using the parts from a broken down MP3 players. Once the card is swiped and the information is entered, the machine stores it for later use and also prints out a fake receipt containing an error message. This adds a new development to merchant fraud prevention and may lower consumer confidence when it comes to swiping at the credit card terminal.

Previous schemes have involved skimmers collecting information which is then transferred onto altered gift cards that can be used to withdraw cash from ATM machines. Similar readers have been installed into ATM terminals as well, and many consumers are now wary about identity theft and account protection when swiping plastic. To some degree this may explain the growing trend of mobile and cloud-based payments, although data security can also be a risk for those technologies. Retailers should ensure that the highest levels of security are practiced and that management stays on top of evolving identity theft methods, which is most critical during high volume shopping times such as the holiday season.

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