Family Security ATM Machines don’t have to be a high-risk decision.
- What if we need to use the outside bank ATM machine after hours?
- What steps should we take to make the process safer for our family?
- What if someone approaches to rob us while using the ATM machine?
Family Security ATM: The Need for a Security Plan
Most families have not formally discussed ATM Machine robbery “what if” scenarios.
- Will your family be prepared or will have to rely on instinct in response to a robbery?
- What if their response instincts are wrong or their reactions inappropriate?
- Will they cooperate or fight with the robber under stress and fear?
- Have you discussed what to do if the ATM machine robber wants to kidnap you?
Family Security ATM: Machines
ATM cash machines have been incorporated into our way of life. They offer a real convenience to those on the run but at the same time offer an element of risk.
Using an ATM machine safely requires awareness and a little planning.
- Just because an ATM machine is open and available 24 hours a day doesn’t mean it is safe to use it. Most ATM robberies occur at night between [8:00] PM and midnight.
- Bank ATM robbers are usually males under 25 years of age and most work alone.
- ATM robbers are usually nearby waiting for a victim to approach and withdraw cash.
- Most ATM robbery victims are women and were alone when robbed.
- Most ATM robbery victims claim that they never saw the robber coming.
- Most ATM robbers threaten the victim with a gun or claim to have a concealed gun.
If you or your family members use ATM cash machines on a regular basis, here are some tips that can make the process a little safer.
- Use only ATM machines in well-lighted, high-traffic areas.
- Don’t use ATM machines that are remote or hidden such as being located behind buildings, behind pillars, or away from public view.
- Beware of obvious hiding places like shrubbery or overgrown trees.
- ATM robbers like to have the element of surprise with no witnesses.
- Get a list of ATM locations from your bank and keep it in your car.
- Choose an ATM that looks and ‘feels’ safer, even if it is a couple of miles out of the way.
- Try and limit your use to daylight hours while the bank is still open.
- When you drive up to an ATM location, scan the area for any suspicious persons.
- If you see anyone suspicious standing nearby or sitting alone in a car, don’t hesitate to drive away.
- Listen to your ‘gut’ instinct about the relative safety of an exterior ATM Machine location.
- When you approach a bank ATM on foot be prepared and have your access card ready.
- After inserting your card and your PIN number keep looking behind you.
- If anyone suspicious or seemingly dangerous approaches terminate your transaction and leave immediately, even if it means leaving your ATM card in the machine.
- When you receive cash from the machine don’t openly count it…put it away immediately, extract your card, and walk away.
- If you use your vehicle at a bank drive-thru ATM machine the same rules apply.
- Make sure there are no obvious hiding places or suspicious persons loitering in the area.
- If there are, listen to your gut instinct and drive away.
- Keep the car in gear, doors locked, with your foot firmly on the brake, while using the ATM machine.
- Keep a close eye on your rear and side-view mirrors during the transaction. Robbers almost always approach from the rear on the driver’s side.
- If you see anyone approaching, drive off even if it means leaving your ATM card behind.
- You can always retrieve it later or cancel the card.
- If you are confronted by an armed robber, just give up your money without argument. The cash is not worth serious injury or death.
- Only use ATM machines in a well-lighted, open, high-traffic area during the daytime
- ATM machines in supermarkets are safer for nighttime use
- Avoid ATM machines adjacent to obvious hiding places
- When you approach an ATM scan the area first for loiterers
- Have your card ready and leave quickly, not counting your cash in public
- Walk or drive away immediately if your instincts tell you so
- Don’t argue with a robber, if confronted, and give up the cash
- Don’t fight with or attempt to follow the robber
- Drive to a safe place and immediately call the police
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