By Linda McGlasson
Bank Info Security
November 1, 2010
Will 2011 be "The Year of the Skimmer?"
After an uptick in skimming incidents already in 2010, security experts
say that we will see even more skimming in the United States in the
months ahead, particularly against ATMs. Lingering magnetic-stripe
technology, rather than EMV chip standard used in Europe and elsewhere,
is to blame, experts say.
While the average ATM skimming attack spans a timeframe of between one
and two hours, losses per incident average $30,000, according to ADT
Security Solutions, which provides anti-skimming solutions for the
financial industry. ADT also estimates that ATM skimming attacks cost
financial institutions and their customers 10 times more than losses
suffered during robberies. According to ACI Worldwide's Card Fraud
Guide, overall card fraud continues to escalate. ACI's report shows U.S.
credit and debit card losses continue to increase. In 2004, credit card
losses accounted for $1.8 billion and rose to $2.04 billion in 2007.
Debit card losses accounted for $810 million in 2004 and rose to $1.05
billion in 2007.
Tom Wills, a fraud analyst at Javelin Strategy & Research, says
criminals responsible for the skimming at ATMs and POS devices have been
caught this year, but their arrests are no deterrent. "2010 has been a
good year for law enforcement," he says. "But as long as there are
vulnerable devices out there, the bad guys will continue to target and
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