Credit card skimmers found at Teachers Credit Union locations

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind-- Dozens of people may be a risk for credit card fraud after skimmers were found at two Teachers Credit Union ATMs.

Bank officials say they were alerted to the breach on Tuesday after customers reported suspicious charges after visiting a branch at 2331 N Meridian Street.

Later that day they say another customer at their Avon branch reported finding a skimmer on an ATM.

“We know when the skimming stopped, what we need now is to know when it started,” Director of Public Relations Jon Glesing said.

According to Glesing, it’s unclear how many of their customers are affected by the breach, or whether the two incidents are related.

“We will obviously take care of those individuals that we know are affected. We’ll make sure their funds are restored; we’ll issue them new cards. But then as we backtrack through the process we will figure out everyone that used an ATM at these locations, and make sure that they’re contacted and watching their accounts as well,” he said.

Glesing added that all 55 branches of TCU have since checked their ATMs for any signs of tampering.

According to CreditCards.com, card skimming is one of the fastest growing fraud schemes. However, experts say skimmers are unusually more commonly found on gas station pumps, and individual kiosk ATMs rather than branch ATMs.

Personal finance expert Peter “Pete the Planner” Dunn says  customer desire for convenience can often lead to becoming a victim of skimming. Dunn says customers can minimize risk by following certain tips:

“The best thing you can do is use the ATM inside the bank. That’s the best thing you can do because criminals are not going to have as much access to slide a skimmer over the top of that,” he said.

Dunn says you can also protect yourself by physically checking an ATM before you use it, as many skimmers are hastily installed and come off easily.

He says customers should also pay close attention to their bank account; using tools like online banking to help inform them when a fraudulent charge shows up.  He also recommends that customers should avoid using a cards linked to a savings account. Dunn also says by separating your checking and savings, the amount of money that can be stolen is limited.

“I like people to have completely separate savings and checking accounts for that reason,” he said.