SNAP recipients warned to protect EBT cards after skimming reports – WPXI

Pennsylvania officials are reminding residents receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits to protect their EBT cards and personal information to avoid becoming victims of theft.

The Department of Human Services has received reports of SNAP benefits being stolen through card-skimming devices in Philadelphia and southeastern Pennsylvania.

“DHS takes fraud prevention seriously and works hard to ensure that benefits administered by DHS reach Pennsylvanians in need. Please do not become a victim of identity theft. Make sure to check the card reader before swiping your card, If you suspect a card skimmer is connected to a device, please notify the business and call the DHS Fraud Reporting Hotline immediately,” said DHS Secretary Dr. Val Arkoosh.

Pennsylvania residents are urged to double-check before scanning their cards at POS machines to ensure there are no skimmed attachments. The FBI recommends the following when using POS terminals:

  • Inspect POS terminals, ATMs and other card readers before use. Check for anything loose, bent, damaged or scratched. If you notice anything unusual, do not use any card reader.
  • Pull the edge of the keyboard before entering your PIN. Then, cover the keyboard as you enter your PIN to prevent the camera from recording your entries.
  • Use ATMs in well-lit indoor locations that are less vulnerable to attack.
  • Be wary of skimming devices in tourist areas, as they are popular targets.
  • Use debit and credit cards that use chip technology. In the United States, there are fewer devices to steal chip data than magnetic stripe data.
  • Avoid using debit cards when you have linked accounts. Please use a credit card instead.
  • If the ATM does not refund your card after you close or cancel the transaction, contact your financial institution.

Potential thefts should be reported by calling the DHS Fraud Reporting Hotline at 1-844-DHS-TIPS and reported to local law enforcement.

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