ATM – Robberies:
· Refrain from using an ATM at night. You’re much safer using an ATM during daylight hours when other people are around. Even on weekends.
· Don’t use an ATM alone. Never! If you have someone waiting with you, don’t leave them to wait in the car while you are gone. Have them go with you. A Crook is less likely to attack more than one person. Especially at those ATM’s that are out of sight from where you park.
· Don’t drive right up to the curb, park, and get out of the car. Look over the entire parking lot as you enter. Look to see if there’s occupied vehicles in the lot that may look suspicious. A car occupied
By 3 guys parked a short distance away isn’t right. Why didn’t they drive right up to the curb? Is there a 4th guy waiting around the corner out of sight waiting for a victim? If it’s a night and there’s no one around, this would not be the ATM to use.
· Eliminate the above scenario completely by planning ahead. Don’t put yourself in a position of having to use an ATM machine “after hours”. I explained in the topic of drunk driving about keeping extra money in your wallet or purse for emergencies. My Dad taught me at an early age to always have a $50 or $100 dollar bill hidden underneath my driver’s license for emergencies. I practice that to this day. Do this and you won’t need to use the machine for that quick forty withdrawal. That late night deposit can wait until the next morning.
· Many banks offer telephonic banking enabling you to do account transfers over the phone. This is much safer than using an ATM for this purpose.
· Persons loitering around an ATM machine? Not a good sign. Maybe they’re waiting for a ride, Maybe they’re not!
· Don’t count your money at the ATM. Chances are someone is watching you do it. As my brother Mark says, there’s probably 2 or 3 of you counting YOUR money! Put it away and wait until you are safely in your car. Once in your car, continue to pay attention as to who is around you.
· DON’T leave your car running or have the keys in the ignition while you are preoccupied at the ATM.
Get into a routine of precaution and you won’t have to call us and explain how you gave your car away. Take your keys with you.
· When possible, take only your ATM card and papers that you need to carry out the transaction. (Example; your ATM card, deposit slip, and paycheck. If you take your wallet or purse with you, you take a chance on losing credit cards, money, and personal identification.)
· Take advantage of merchants and businesses that use ATM or debit machines for purchases at the sales counter or at the gas pumps. It is safer, just as convenient and there are usually more people around than at an isolated ATM machine. At many mini marts and grocery stores you can usually get money back.
· Speaking of grocery stores, many have installed ATM machines inside the store lobby in addition to having debit machines at the check out stand. A well lit environment, employee’s present, and usually many other customers around. MUCH SAFER than being alone outside the front of a bank!