Police: Be aware of skimming devices planted on ATMs during Woodward Dream Cruise

Devices can capture your pin number, take your cash

By Karen Drew - Reporter/Anchor


While Dream Cruisers and spectators enjoy the classic cars this weekend, the distraction helps make them a good target at the ATM.

With huge crowds expected this weekend for the annual Woodward Dream Cruise, police say people need to be on the look out for skimming devices placed on ATM's that can capture your pin number and take your cash.

Police tell Local 4 thieves often like to strike when a large festival comes to town because they know people will be using the ATMs.  This way, they can steal more cash.

"I didn't know that was going on," said Cooper Nicholas. "I can see the point of that because there's going to be a lot of people using ATMs."

A few weeks ago, a credit union in Ferndale was targeted.  Located right off Woodward, police tell Local 4 more than $200,000 was stolen from people's accounts who used that ATM.

Their personal information was stolen from the skimming device.

MORE: Police work to ID ATM fraud suspects

"That's better than robbing a bank," said Ike McKinnon, a retired Detroit police chief.

McKinnon says skimming ATM machines is a popular crime the public really doesn't look out for.

"As we put it in, we want to feel and make sure there's nothing under there," said McKinnon. "because what it does, it captures your card under there. As you put your numbers in, they also hook a camera there."

McKinnon says if when you put your debit card into an ATM and it doesn't feel right, pull out your card and don't use it.

"We want to make sure that we alert people to what they're doing," said McKinnon.

Some people attending the Dream Cruise already say they're being extra careful when they use their debit cards.

"It makes me a little more cautious," said Jo Marshall.

Police say ATMs have been targeted in Commerce Township, West Bloomfield Township, Livonia, Ferndale, Westland, Novi and Wixom.

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