Although CHIP technology has helped reduce debit card fraud here in Canada, the risk has not totally been eliminated. Debit card fraud is still a significant concern.
Debit Card Skimming
Anytime you swipe your card using the magnetic stripe you are at risk of having your card compromised. Skimming can still happen:
- at retailers who have not yet switched to the CHIP technology or where the CHIP function is not working and you have to swipe your card using the magnetic stripe to complete your transaction.
- in countries where the CHIP technology has not yet been adopted.
- at POS terminals or ATMs that have had their card readers tampered with.
Minimizing Your Risk
You can minimize your risk by only using POS terminals that are CHIP enabled and by using the “Rule of Thumb” on all POS terminals and ATMs.
The Thumb Test
If you cannot insert your CHIP card with your thumb pointed at the device and have your thumb remain fully on your card, tell the store clerk you believe the terminal has been tampered. Do not enter your PIN and remove your card. We also recommend changing your PIN often.
Visit March is Fraud Prevention Month to learn more about fraud.
To learn more about debit card skimming and other scams that are on-the-rise, visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.