Security measures for bank cards

Advice for cardholders. Explanations of the main types of bank card fraud and on how to protect yourself.

What are the main types of fraud?

  • Rigged ATM. The bank’s Automatic Teller Machine (ATM) is rigged to retain your bank card. The perpetrator, who is on the scene, advises you to re-enter your PIN code. The perpetrator observes and memorizes the code. Once you leave, the perpetrator retrieves your card and can use it to make purchases or cash withdrawals.
  • Skimming. Skimming refers to the theft of information contained on a bank card. To obtain this information, the perpetrators modify certain components of an ATM or card machine in a store. Once in possession of this information, the perpetrators can make purchases with the card or cash withdrawals.

Examples:

Skimming
 
Skimming

Skimming

How can you protect yourself?

1. Keep your PIN code secret

  • memorize it, and don't write it down anywhere
  • do not tell it to anyone, including the police, your bank or your insurance company. None of these entities would ever request your PIN code in any way, including by email, letter or telephone.

2. Be sure no one can see you enter your PIN code

  • use your hand or your body to block others' view of the keypad

3. Do not get distracted as you enter your PIN code

  • be careful of people who offer – or who request – assistance
  • if you feel you are being watched, ask the person to step back
  • if you do not feel safe, refrain from using the bank machine
  • inform the bank of any suspicious behavior.

4. Keep the card in a safe place

  • do not leave it in a car
  • treat your card as if it were cash
  • do not give it to anyone.

5. Pay close attention when you pay with the card at a local business
or restaurant

  • do not let the card out of your sight.

6. Regularly review your bank statements

  • keep all receipts of bank machine operations and payment transactions
  • inform your bank of any discrepancies immediately.

7. If you observe any discrepancies, have your bank block your
card immediately

  • carry your bank's telephone numbers or those of the card hotline with you at all times.

Numbers to call for questions or to block a card

  • For Maestro and BCV-Cash cards
    From 7:30am to 7:30pm: contact the Call Center at 0844 228 228
    Outside of these hours call the Bank Card Hotline at 044 271 22 30
  • For MasterCard and Visa credit cards, call the card issuer directly.
    For Viseca, call 058 958 83 83

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Contact an advisor

  • By phone
    0844 228 228
    or 021 212 10 00
    Mon-Fri, 7:30am - 7:30pm
    (CET)
  • By email

Swiss Government

For further advice regarding internet security, visit the Swiss Government's dedicated MELANI website.

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