Springfield ATM compromised by skimming device

Police are searching for the man accused of installing the device on the machine at Northwest Community Credit Union at 5000 Main Street.

Posted: May 15, 2018 7:37 PM
Updated: May 15, 2018 7:48 PM

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. – People who used an ATM in Springfield last weekend are being told to call their bank to check their accounts after someone reported there was a skimming device on the machine that attempted to steal customers’ information.

Police said they believe a man in a silver 2018 Kia Sportage installed a skimming device at Northwest Community Credit Union at 5000 Main Street in Springfield around 12:30 a.m. Saturday.

Officers said the device was not discovered until around 7:30 a.m. Sunday, when a customer noticed the ATM did not look normal and called police.

The credit union’s security and loss prevention department said 168 Northwest Community Credit Union members and 132 non-members used the ATM during that time period.

The credit union is sending out letters to those impacted and telling customers to check their transactions online. If anyone sees any activity they didn’t authorize, they’re told to contact their bank or credit union.

If an ATM customer’s card was targeted, they will not be held responsible and the credit union will get them a new card as soon as possible.

“In this case, we’ve already blocked all the cards that are impacted,” said Garrett Christopherson, a security manager for Northwest Community Credit Union. “We proactively sent out the communication as far as the other additional card holders that are in place.”

A skimming device captures card information from the magnetic strip on the card and relays it somewhere else. Christopherson said these devices are very common.

“This can happen to anyone at any ATM,” Christopherson said. “Anywhere you insert your card could be a skimmer or be compromised.”

There are ways to tell is an ATM has been tampered with, according to Northwest Community Credit Union.

A phony card reader can be inserted over the real card reader, which can steal information. Keypads may also be duplicated and laid on top of an existing one to record customers’ pin numbers.

Keypads and card readers usually show wear over time, so it can be a red flag if they look new. These fake devices might be installed quickly, so ATM users should watch out for quick fixes on the machines like electrical tape.

Police said the vehicle the suspect used while installing the skimming device was rented from a rental agency near the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. They said they believe he may be heading south along I-5 installing similar devices at different ATMs.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to call police.

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