Cash machine thieves skim accounts

CASH machine users in Felixstowe were today warned to be on their guard after thieves “skimmed” bank cards and stole hundreds of pounds from accounts.Within hours the thieves were using the cloned cards in cashpoints in London.

CASH machine users in Felixstowe were today warned to be on their guard after thieves “skimmed” bank cards and stole hundreds of pounds from accounts.

Within hours the thieves were using the cloned cards in cashpoints in London.

One man whose account was raided said: “I used my card at the TSB Lloyds machine in Hamilton Road at 2pm on Saturday - and by 6pm money was being taken out of my account at machines in St John's Wood.

“They took £600 out of my account and left me with just 50p!

“It's such a shock and absolutely awful but my bank, Barclays, have been very helpful and will reimburse the money.

“I just want to warn people this is happening and they should be very careful when using these machines - people may not check their accounts for several days and by then a lot of money may have gone.”

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It is the second time in two months cash machines at the resort have been targeted.

Janet Knight, of Felixstowe, said: “I had two cash cards cloned at a cash machine in Felixstowe, which has caused myself and my husband to lose a total of £1,130 which we cannot afford to lose.

“Luckily for us the Felixstowe branch of the Nationwide have been extremely helpful and have sorted it out and our money will be re-imbursed.

“People must be very careful when using local cash machines and to check their accounts to see that no money has gone missing.”

Millions of pounds goes missing every week from bank accounts from “skimming” scams.

The thieves attach a false front to the part of the cashpoint where a user inserts their cards - this device then reads the details from the card's magnetic strip and wirelessly sends them to the thief waiting in a car nearby.

In addition, an accomplice may wait near the machine and take note of people's PIN numbers as they punch them in, or a tiny camera - hidden in a leaflet dispenser or under the top of the machine - will record the PIN.

Police have warned people to be very careful and to check machines thoroughly before they use them for any suspicious devices.

Under new legislation, victims of fraud only have to report the incident to their bank which will make a decision on whether it should be investigated by the police.

Have you been a victim of “skimming”? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk

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