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Keeping Your Cards Safe

Debit and credit cards are a quick and convenient way to pay for your purchases. During hectic times of the year it is easy to become distracted. Remembering some card safety tips will help keep your accounts safe.

  • Secure your Cards - Keep your cards in a safe location and pay close attention to your purse and wallet while shopping. For additional safety, carry only the cards you need to make your purchases.
  • Monitor Account Activity - Closely monitor your account activity and report suspicious transactions. Staying up-to-date is easy with the help of online banking, mobile banking and our telephone banking system.
  • Shop Trusted Merchants - Shop with merchants you know and trust both online and offline. When shopping at a store, keep an eye on your card (see skimming below) and be sure to collect any receipts. When shopping online, look for the small padlock icon that appears in the bottom right of the Web page. The beginning of the retailer's Internet address will change from "http" to "https" when a purchase is made using a secure connection.
  • Watch for Skimmers - Card skimmers are electronic devices capable of capturing your account information for purposes of creating a duplicate card. Skimmers are most commonly found on ATMs and gas station pumps but can also be used by a dishonest employee of a store, restaurant or bar to obtain your card information.
  • Protect your PIN - Beware of "shoulder surfers" who peer over your shoulder while you enter your PIN into an ATM or while making a purchase. Don't use a word or number that is easily guessed or that can be found in your wallet (e.g. birthday). Memorize your PIN and don’t share it with anyone.

Report

If you find any suspicious activity on your Mechanics Bank accounts or suspect fraud, please report it immediately by calling the following number.

To report a lost or stolen debit card:

To report a lost or stolen credit card:

Card Skimming

Skimming is a method used by fraudsters to steal or “skim” your personal information off your debit, ATM or credit card during a transaction. Once the card information is captured it is encoded onto a fake card and used to withdraw money from your account or to make purchases.

A small device is usually placed close to or on top of the regular card reader, such as at the ATM or gas pump. In addition, small cameras may be installed to capture the PIN number as you enter it. These are both very well hidden and often blend in with the machine they are placed on. Once installed the fraudster simply waits for an unsuspecting person to use the machine and gathers their personal information.

Helpful tips to spotting a skimmer:

  • Appearance of an attachment to the card slot. Pull on it. If it comes off or loosens, do not use the ATM and report it immediately.
  • Appearance of an overlay on the keypad, possibly making it difficult to type.
  • Unusual instructions on the display screen or a blank screen.
  • Signs, especially those posted over the card reader, saying directions have changed or to use a specific machine.
  • The flashing area of the card entry slot on an ATM is not visible.
  • An unusual appearance to the front of the machine, mirrors, differences in look from nearby machines or extra piece

Protect yourself:

  • Where possible, use ATMs you are most familiar with. Choose well-lit, well-placed ATMs where you feel comfortable.
  • Review your account transactions frequently to look for any suspicious charges
  • Educate yourself on how to spot a skimmer.
  • When you enter your PIN number, cup your hands over the keypad to help block the view of any cameras or individuals.
  • Choose the credit instead of the debit option when making purchases, so you do not have to use your PIN.
  • Set up balance, transaction and debit card alerts in Personal Online Banking.

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