NAC knocks new FICO findings on card compromise at nonbank ATMs

The National ATM Council Inc. is questioning — for the second year in a row — FICO statistics concerning card compromises at retail ATMs in the United States. 

FICO, a data analytics and credit-scoring company, announced in March that 60 percent of card compromises occurring in 2016 involved nonbank ATMs. FICO reported the same percentage in the 2015 edition of its annual report on card compromise.

NAC refuted the 2015 findings, and said that its own survey of 166 U.S. members found an "extremely low" incidence of card compromise from skimming.

In disputing this year's report, NAC said that it's own 2016 ATM member survey again found a very low occurrence in skimming at retail ATMs. Skimming Survey results, with only 1 in 10 providers reporting this type of attack.

NAC Executive Director Bruce Renard suggested that the FICO study was biased against independent operators:

The fact that the nation's largest banks hold significant ownership interests in FICO  and those banks' ATMs are in competition with nonbank 'retail' ATMs raises serious questions and concerns.

We have no doubt that, during the current EMV chip card transition, criminals are using more and more counterfeit/cloned mag stripe cards at payment and ATM terminals across the board.

NAC believes it is misleading and inaccurate, however, to suggest that the initial skimming "compromise" of card data is happening to any material degree at U.S. retail ATMs.

NAC chairman George Sarantopoulos also questioned the credibility of the FICO report:

Based on my many years in the ATM business and numerous discussions with ATM entrepreneurs throughout the nation, there is a clear consensus that card skimming is extremely rare at ATMs in retail locations.

It's common knowledge in the industry that the much higher volume, outdoor, unattended bank ATMs are the prime targets for card skimming. Our much lower transaction volume, heavily attended, indoor retail ATMs remain one of the safest places in America to get your cash.

Topics: Customer Experience, Customer Service, Data Security, Stats and Facts

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