Tom loses P90K to ATM skimming
CEBU City Mayor Tomas Osmeña joined the many other victims of “skimming,” who lost sizable amounts of money through unauthorized withdrawals using the automated teller machines (ATM).
Osmeña, who lost P90,000 from his bank account, said he did not disclose the incident right away because he wanted to get all of the information first. He said he kept quiet because he did not yet know the circumstances.
“But since you asked, yes. There was an illegal withdrawal in my ATM,” he said.
Last month, at least 15 individuals fell victim to the series of unauthorized withdrawals.
Skimming involves the use of a card reader or a “skimmer” which can be disguised to look like part of the ATM.
The skimmer saves personal information from the card, including the pin number, giving skimmers access to the depositor’s bank account.
Osmeña said the bank scam artist made unauthorized withdrawals three times in his Land Bank of the Philippines payroll account last October.
Osmeña declined to disclose details because of the ongoing investigation.
He said he informed LBP of the incident just last week. The bank promised to cooperate.
“They (LBP) are pulling out the films. They are getting the video,” he said.
On November, victims of skimming came out and asked help from Councilor Dave Tumulak, who was also a victim himself.
Tumulak reached out to other banks in the city, asking for photos of the supposed suspect, but these banks allegedly said their lawyers have to agree first.
After almost a month, Tumulak said the banks failed to submit to him the necessary information.
He said because of this, the legal team is in the process of filing a complaint against all the banks that failed to cooperate.
“The banks should cooperate so that the suspects will be caught,” he said.
The Cebu Bankers Club met with the victims last month and promised to assist the victims to fast-track the investigation. They also issued an advisory following series of skimming incidents.
“This situation is really alarming especially for depositors. We need the cooperation of the banks,” Tumulak said.
He also urged the public to be cautious and to check their accounts regularly.
“If possible, they should put their money in a passbook account,” he said.
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