Breach compromises hundreds of debit cards in Metro Vancouver

Large or small, payment card data breaches can have a devastating effect on organizations and individuals alike.

banking-blog-atm-skimmer-at-a-cash-machine-in-germany1,200 Vancity customers who made purchases in Metro Vancouver are now victims of payment card information theft after a skimming device was discovered on multiple card machines.

“We found out this morning from Central One, our card provider, that two Vancouver-area retailers have had their card machines compromised as a result of a skimming operation,” Vancity spokesperson Darwin Sauer told CTV News.

Skimming devices are rarely covered on the IT Governance blog, but that doesn’t mean they’re not a common threat.

While only two people have notified the credit union about odd-looking transactions, Vancity has been smart and placed limits on affected cards as well as contacting the customers about issuing new cards.

“Most financial institutions, we’re assuming, do what we’ve done today, which is put limits on the cards and also notify members immediately,” Sauer said.

Skimming device scams can be easily avoided by carrying out three simple steps:

  1. Cover the keypad with your hand when entering your pin.
  2. Check the card slot to make sure there is nothing overlaying it (gently pull it).
  3. Feel the top of the ATM and look out for a camera.

I recommend that you pass these tips onto anyone in your organization who has access to a corporate debit/credit card and if you’re serious about your staff’s awareness of security – take a look at IT Governance’s staff awareness training solutions.