Tap ATM Near Me: Thieves use glue, tap debit card to pay function to empty accounts at Chase Bank | How to avoid getting scammed

SAN FRANCISCO– ATMs offer great convenience, but they’ve also been longtime targets for thieves. Some use skimmers to steal your account number or stand nearby to steal customers. Now there’s a new type of ATM fraud – and a warning to watch out for if you’re using the ‘tap’ feature on your debit card.

The Tap feature uses radio waves to access your account – no need to insert your card. But, some Chase Bank customers say thieves used the tap plus regular glue feature to steal their money.

Pamela Bongiorno shows 7 On Your Side with our sister station, ABC7 News, how she got scammed at this ATM. “So I was using the ATM on the right side,” she said. “My partner was there, the guy next to him was there. I inserted my card, it didn’t work.”

Then a man online offered advice.

“‘Oh, if you have a chip in your card, you can use it,'” Bongiorno said.

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So Bongiorno tapped his card. This time it worked. She got her money, thanked the man and left.

“And then the next morning, I look at my bank account…” she said.

To his surprise, Bongiorno saw three more withdrawals from his account – $940 was gone.

“I said to my partner, ‘This guy scammed me last night,'” she said.

The same thing happened to Rob Bell at the same ATM. When the card reader didn’t work, a man leaned over.

“I didn’t think about it, I just thought he was using the ATM,” Bell said. “‘There is a problem with the slot function. You must use the tap function.'”

So Bell tapped his card, took his money and left. Later he discovered that two accounts had been depleted – $560 was gone.

Justin Sindelar tapped his Apple Watch at this ATM and withdrew $40.

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Later, he found five more consecutive withdrawals – $960 was gone.

“Wait a second, I definitely didn’t withdraw that much money,” he said. “I think someone approached the ATM right after I used it…”

The victims filed a complaint with the bank manager.

“‘I reported this to the police, this is happening on Mission Street,'” Bongiorno said.

The manager explained to Bongiorno how the scam works – it starts with glue.

“She told me they put glue in the ATM card reader. So you can’t, you can’t use your card,” she said.

So customers tap their card instead – and here’s the trick. When pressed, the account remains open for more transactions, unless the customer proactively logs out.

Some customers don’t know that.

But scammers do.

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They wait for the victim to leave, then walk away and continue to withdraw from their account.

The three victims filed a fraud complaint with Chase Bank. All three were refused. The bank said the customers authorized these withdrawals.

“And that’s definitely not true,” Sindelar said.

“I said, ‘This is ridiculous,'” Bongiorno said. “Why would I do four separate trades in a row? Right?”

“They should have a picture of who did it,” Bell said.

The victims said Chase would not review the surveillance video because the amounts were less than $5,000.

So Bongiorno resubmitted his request.

And again, and again. Chase eventually replaced his money.

And after our research, the bank also reimbursed Sindelar and Bell.

Chase told 7 On Your Side: “When using an ATM, be vigilant to protect your PIN and make sure you’ve signed out of your account.”

“I will never use that little tap function again,” Bongiorno said.

Chase did not explain why multiple withdrawals did not trigger a fraud alert, or why the bank did not review surveillance video – but each transaction requires entering a PIN – that thieves had apparently captured. So always cover the keyboard and log out before you leave.

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