Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Keep your ATM Pin Secret and use SMS transaction alerts

Many of us may share our ATM pin with a close family membe,r but when we expand the community to include drivers, close friends, strangers who we ask for assistance at ATM kiosks, and even write the pin on the card we are inviting trouble.
Keep your ATM pin secret, ensure that no one can read your pin while you key it in at the Kiosk, and  choose pin numbers which are hard to guess (not 1234 etc) are advice which banks have posted in ATM booths, screens and brochures. ICICI Bank has a security awareness screensaver with just this advice. I liked their preference for security awareness over advertisement.
So what can go wrong! Well recently in Mumbai, an ATM card was stolen and used by a trusted friend who knew the Pin number. Fortunately, the victim received an SMS informing her of the transactions and immediately complained to the Mumbai cops who with some old fashioned detective work cracked the case. Kudos to them too!  Midday Mirror Reports Woman, husband held for stealing Rs. 12,000 with friend’s ATM card
I would have expected the case to be cracked by a forensic review of CCTV data from the ATM from which the transaction was withdrawn, but for some reason this was not the way it was solved. It could be there was no CCTV surveillance which is not a best practice.
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