At the San Jose Mercury News they are reporting a unique type of theft, in which ATM card readers were actually replaced by crooks, so that they could read credit card and pin numbers. Seems that the switch was made to a ATM machine in a local supermarket, and the bad guys were able to steal some 212 numbers for their own use. The crooks either made withdrawals from accounts or sold the information to other people. The article goes on to state:

“What we have here is more than one person; they’ve been able to get in [Lunardi’s] and switch out the ATM card reader,” Sgt. Tam McCarty said. “Once they’ve done that they can read the card and PIN numbers and either make a temporary card or sell the numbers over the phone.”

“When I called the bank I was amazed,” said resident Mary Ann Lemmo. “There were two withdrawals. They took $700 on Sunday and $700 on Monday.”

Lemmo used a Bank of America debit card at Lunardi’s. She said the bank has reimbursed her for the lost funds.

Capt. Alana Forest said the average theft has been $1,000.

My first thoughts when I read this were that the thieves are getting fairly bold changing out the ATM readers. It would appear they they may have had some inside help to do this. Also this is one more thing we need to worry about when it comes to ID thefts.

Comments welcome.

Full article is here.