Guard your ATM, police ask public

By: Dominic D. Yasay, Inna Mejia, Victor Anthony V. Silva November 23,2016 - 09:55 PM

BOTH the police and Cebu’s banks called on public vigilance to guard against automated teller machine (ATM) skimmers or those who steal cash from ATM deposits.

The latest victim was a 47-year-old overseas Filipino worker named Eniel Ybañez, a resident of Barangay Lutopan, Toledo City, who told Cebu City Councilor Dave Tumulak that he lost P200,000 from his ATM savings account.

He recalled that he last withdrew money from his ATM account on Nov. 11 at a bank located in corner Jakosalem & M.C. Briones Street, Sto. Niño.

Ybañez said he learned about the theft when he withdrew near the South General Hospital in Naga City last Nov. 19.

“We went there for my wife’s medical checkup. Only P78,000 was left,” he said.

He said the money in the account was his savings for two years and three months working in a construction company based in Qatar.

Tumulak, who lost money to ATM skimmers, wrote a letter to the Central Bank of the Philippines and the Office of the President informing them of these series of skimming.

“They should be aware that this is what’s happening in Cebu,” he said.

All banks failed to submit to the police a picture or a video of the supposed suspect to help fast-track the investigation.

Tumulak warned all the banks and financial institutions on the implementing rules and regulations of City Ordinance 2381 or the ordinance on closed-circuit TV cameras.

He said next week, he will write a letter to all the bank presidents to require them to submit to the city the specification of their CCTV cameras.

“Some have low-cost cameras. It is hard to determine the subject from the perimeter,” Tumulak said.

The city would also file a case if found that the bank violated the ordinance.

Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña voiced alarm on these ATM skimming cases in yesterday’s press conference.

The Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) said ATM card holders should guard their accounts.

For their part, the Cebu Bankers Club (CBC) said they issued the advisory after yesterday’s board meeting.

CBC past president Maximo Rey Eleccion said in a text message to Cebu Daily News that the board decided to decline giving interviews at the moment and issued advisories instead.

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TAGS: ATM, bank accounts, BPI, CCTV, Qatar, withdrawal

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