Am I becoming more paranoid as I get older, or am I just being more aware of my surroundings? Kind of a vague question, I guess.

So here's an example. When I use a credit or debit card to make a purchase at an automated machine like an ATM or at a self serve gas pump, I closely examine the area where the credit or debit card slides in to see if a scammer has been attached to the machine or pump.

You may think I'm being paranoid, but these things happen and have happened in our area. WNEP-TV in Scranton, PA recently reported a scammer found on a gas pump at a convenience store in Luzerne County, PA. While that location isn't close by, the point is, that scammers can be added anywhere, and it can result in customers losing money from their credit card, checking, or savings accounts.

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What can you do to help prevent this from happening to you? Forbes outlines some ways including looking over the card reader. If it looks suspicious, do your transactions inside and alert one of the stores or bank employees.

Also, if a camera is overhead, cover up the keypad when entering your code to prevent it from being seen, and for cash withdrawals, Forbes suggests you use official bank ATMs rather than non-bank ATMs like the ones you find at a bar, convenience store or other non-bank businesses.

Another suggestion is to use a credit card rather than a debit card at the gas station pump for the protection a credit card gives you versus a debit card. And even if you think all is well and safe after using an ATM or self-serve gas pump, regularly monitor your accounts for any suspicious activity. It could  save you from getting ripped off along with some big financial headaches

via WNEP-TV, Forbes

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