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Here’s what you should do if fraudsters withdraw money from your ATM card

The list of dos and don’ts for cybercrime or debit/credit card frauds

mumbai Updated: Mar 27, 2018 10:49 IST
Vivina Vishwanathan
Vivina Vishwanathan
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,ATM,debit card
(HT File/Representational Image )

Last week, when Mumbai-based Chikita Kukreja, who works for a pharmaceutical multinational company, woke up and checked her phone, she was shocked to see eight consecutive automated teller machine (ATM) withdrawal text messages from her bank in a span of couple of minutes. The transaction took place in Delhi, while she was sleeping in Mumbai. At the time of the transaction, her debit card was with her in Mumbai.

Mumbai-based Abhishek Subhedar, a consultant with the Maharashtra government, also has a similar story too. In his case, two consecutive ATM withdrawals took place in Delhi while his card was in Mumbai with him.

The bank says it appears to be a skimming attack. An ICICI Bank spokesperson said, “Prima facie, these appear to be cases of card skimming. Typically in skimming, fraudsters copy card information from the magnetic strip of a credit/debit card while it is being used by the customer at various merchant locations. They also gain access to the PIN through shoulder surfing or strategic placement of small cameras.”

  • In most cases, banks don’t refund or give a line of credit immediately
  • Usually, a timeline for investigation followed by a different timeline for refund is given depending on the proof of liability
  • In case of ICICI Bank, the timeline initially given to the customer was 19 days for investigation
  • Axis Bank on the other hand, gave a timeline between 30 days and 120 days for refund
  • According to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), there is no liability on the customer if unauthorised transactions take place due to contributory fraud, negligence and deficiency on part of the bank (irrespective of whether or not the transaction is reported by the customer)
  • There is zero liability if there is a third-party breach in case the deficiency is neither with bank nor the customer but elsewhere in the system and the customer informs the bank within three working days of receiving the communication from the bank regarding the unauthorised transaction
  • A customer is liable if the loss is due to the customer’s negligence such as sharing details of the card and PIN or password
  • But once you have informed the bank and the transaction happens after you have informed, the unauthorised transaction amount has to been borne by the bank
  • In certain situations, customers may be liable up to a certain amount.
  • Step 1: Call your bank’s customer care number and file a complaint
  • Step 2: Some banks require you to register a complaint with the police
  • Step 3: If you are not happy with your bank’s response, you can approach its internal banking ombudsman
  • Step 4: If still unhappy, either approach the Banking Ombudsman or consumer court

In both the cases, ICICI Bank has refunded the money. “We had requested the customers to submit a few required documents, including a duly filled charge dispute form (CDF), a formal document required by the ATM network partners. This is a document by which a customer states that he/she has not done a particular transaction. As soon as we received the required documents, we returned the money to the customers. As a precautionary measure, we are also issuing new debit cards to our customers.”

It is not just ICICI Bank customers who have been affected. An Axis Bank Ltd’s customer also lost money due to fraudulent ATM transaction. Delhi-based Venkat Aditya Kopeneni, who heads branding in a consultancy firm, got five ATM cash withdrawal messages from his bank of a total amount of Rs50,000. At the time of the transaction, Kopeneni had the debit card with him. “The location of the ATM transaction shows West Delhi. At that moment, I was in South Delhi,” said Kopeneni.

“In this particular instance, the bank is in touch with the aforementioned customer and shall arrange to resolve the grievance at the earliest,” said Axis Bank spokesperson. Here the bank has issued a line of credit to the customer’s bank account, however, his available account balance doesn’t reflect the same.

First Published: Mar 27, 2018 10:18 IST