by Paul Bowers
A service technician recently discovered a card-skimming device attached to a Bank of America ATM at 2275 Ashley Crossing Drive, according to a report filed with the Charleston Police Department.
Skimmers come in various forms, but they can record data from the magnetic strips, card numbers, and even printed security codes on debit and credit cards. The incident report does not indicate what type of skimming device was used on the ATM or how long it had been operating before it was discovered.
According to the report, two technicians from an ATM service company called police on Thurs. Aug. 27 at about 6:40 p.m. to report that they had found an active skimming device on the machine. One of the technicians said that the ATM had an "Out of Service" sign displayed on its screen, and after making multiple attempts to reset the machine, he called in his colleague who had recently completed a course on skimmers. The colleague said that he "immediately noticed the object on the ATM card reader was a skimming device" and called police.
The technicians were unable to tell police how many customers' cards had been skimmed, if any. A surveillance camera was pointing at the machine, but they did not have access to the video because the bank branch was closed for the evening.
Nicole Nastacie, a regional spokesperson for Bank of America, did not comment on how long the skimming device had been installed on the machine. She said that the bank encourages customers to monitor their accounts online for suspicious activity and to notify bank employees if they notice anything unusual about an ATM.
"In the event we detect that a skimming device has been used, we proactively reach out to customers who may have been affected in order to block existing cards and issue new ones," Nastacie said.