While you are paying for your groceries, filling out a form, or using your ATM card, another person may be “shoulder surfing” to gather your personal information. This happens when a person sees and quickly memorizes your personal information to use as his or her own. It can be done by looking directly over your shoulder or from a distance with binoculars or other devices.
Prevent shoulder surfing with some basic precautions:
- Block the view of your paperwork, your credit or debit card, or the keypad by moving your body or hand.
- Have your credit or debit card ready when you are at the register. The longer it takes to search for your wallet or right card, the longer others can see the contents, and the greater risk you run of other vital pieces of information falling from your purse or wallet.
- Never carry your Social Security card.
- Respect your hunches. If something doesn’t seem right or someone is standing too close, move away or pause. The most important way to prevent shoulder surfing is to be alert and aware of your surroundings at all times.
Contact us if you have any questions about shoulder surfing or other ways to protect yourself while using an ATM.
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