Earlier this year, a woman in Queens was robbed at an automated teller machine after she withdrew funds from her account. Home security tips aren't only limited to the house, especially at ATMs, where large amounts of money can tempt thieves.
Practice safe techniques
You should have your card ready before arriving at the ATM. This will make the process faster, leaving less time for potential thieves to approach you. Avoid writing any account information on your card, since the convenience extends to anyone else.
Try to find locations that are highly visible and have plenty of foot traffic. Street machines can be safe during the day, when there are plenty of pedestrians walking by. However, avoid these sites during quieter hours at night. Use your best judgment when using an ATM in a bank vestibule. Though many have locks that require a card, it's easy for thieves to enter behind you. Instead, opt for machines that are located inside open space businesses, even if it means paying the additional fee. It's better to err on the side of caution.
As you use the machine, maintain awareness of your surroundings. Get through the process quickly and take note of any suspicious figures lurking about. Remember to put away your money before leaving the ATM, since the area can be a prime location for thieves, who are aware of the many cameras surrounding a machine and the absence of such surveillance further away from the site.
The Los Angeles Police Department advised individuals to be wary of any occupied parked cars near ATMs. They suggested canceling a transaction immediately if you feel unsafe at any point. The group also pointed out that you can always return to the machine when you feel that it's safer. Additionally, try to avoid locations that are positioned around a corner, which can provide cover for potential thieves.
There's always safety in numbers, so ask a friend or family member to accompany you when possible. You can also look for locations with security guards. If you suspect that you're being followed, make your way to a well-lit and populated area to deter the thief.
Finally, if you're ever caught in a confrontation, always hand over your possessions and don't engage the robber. Remember to take note of his or her features so you can pass the information to the authorities as soon as it's safe.