Credit Card Skimming Skyrocketed 77% In 2023: Here’s What to Look For

Shocking new data reveals that debit card skimming continues its relentless climb upwards here in America. For the first half of 2023, the number of compromised debit cards has skyrocketed 77% ¹ compared to the same period last year.

That translates to nearly 120,000 additional unsuspecting consumers who have had their card details stolen by crafty criminals in just six short months. This alarming trend shows no signs of slowing down either.

In fact, these fraudsters are getting even more efficient, now stealing more card numbers per skimming device deployed. The average number of compromised cards per skimming incident has increased a disturbing 48% compared to 2022.

You may have heard about skimming, but do you know what to look for?  Let me show you.

Here’s What to Look For

This excellent video a use breaks down the parts of credit card skimmers. Notice both parts, the button pad and the card scanner.

@twincoria Please stay alert they keep putting these things up, be very careful out there. #fraud #Creditcardfraud #skimmerdevices #fraudatpump #identitydef #stolencreditcard #fraudatgaspump #gasstationfrauders ♬ original sound – Cesar Coria

Cunning Criminals Expand Their Hunting Grounds

Previously focusing their nefarious efforts on non-bank ATMs, these skimming scammers are now boldly targeting bank ATMs more frequently as well.

Bank ATM compromises have doubled over the last year.

No location or institution seems safe from their devious devices anymore. Top compromised states like California, Florida and New Jersey have all seen significant increases in 2023. Rising hotspots like Virginia and Texas have entered the top five for the first time.

Even more worrying, fraudsters are expanding internationally. Countries like the UK, Australia and India have also reported surges in ATM and point-of-sale skimming. It’s quickly becoming a global epidemic.

Fight Back Against the Rising Fraud Wave

So how can everyday consumers and financial institutions fight back against this rising fraud wave? Here are some tips:

  • Use chip-and-PIN when possible instead of swiping. The chip makes your card data much harder to steal.
  • Inspect ATMs and card readers before using. Check for anything unusual like an extra attachment. Avoid machines that seem suspicious.
  • Opt for contactless tap-and-go payments when you can. This better protects your card’s magnetic stripe.
  • Banks should use real-time monitoring to swiftly identify compromised cards and alert customers to prevent losses.
  • Consider sending customers proactive warnings about new skimming hotspots or techniques. Forewarned is forearmed.

Time to Take Bold Action

The stakes have been raised in 2023 as crafty criminals find new ways to siphon money through card skimming across the globe. But by working together and staying vigilant, both consumers and banks can help thwart fraud and protect hard-earned money.

This troubling trend shows no signs of slowing, so constant collaboration and education will be key. It’s time to tackle this issue head-on before it’s too late.

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Martha A. Lavallie
Martha A. Lavallie
Author & Editor | + posts

Martha is a journalist with close to a decade of experience in uncovering and reporting on the most compelling stories of our time. Passionate about staying ahead of the curve, she specializes in shedding light on trending topics and captivating global narratives. Her insightful articles have garnered acclaim, making her a trusted voice in today's dynamic media landscape.