HASBROUCK HEIGHTS, N.J. (CBS 2/ WCBS 880) — The search was on Monday night for tech-savvy bank thieves in New Jersey.
Their brazen heist began with a small device hooked up to an indoor ATM machine at Bank of America, which allowed them to drain the accounts of scores of customers, CBS 2’s Dave Carlin reports.
Over the previous three days, $1,500 disappeared from Robert Brady’s account. He told Carlin he felt violated.
Withdrawls of $500 were made from ATMs in Moonachie, Hackensack and New York City over the weekend, but Brady was nowhere near any of the three places.
He was robbed by tech-savvy crooks. Here’s how it works: Police said a device can be placed over the card reader allowing criminals access to the card numbers and pin numbers to create new cards which are used at ATMs to take out maximum amounts.
Customers started reporting large sums of money missing from their accounts. In Brady’s case bank managers noticed something wrong with his account.
“When they saw the card being used in New York they called us as fraud protection, which was great, and called us this morning and said were you in New York City trying to withdraw money and we said no and that’s when my wife came to the bank to take care of everything,” Brady said.
The $1,500 was back in their account on Monday night. Bank of America is asking all customers to contact their branch if they notice anything unusual during transactions or on their bank statements.
“We encourage customers to be extra vigilant and notify a banking center employee if they notice something unusual about an ATM or other transaction,” Bank of America spokesman T.J. Crawford told WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell. “If a skimming device was used they will be reimbursed.”
WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell with details from the bank
Hasbrouck Heights resident Tom Zalewski admitted being a little nervous checking his.
“My receipt is okay; my balance is okay. That’s a relief, knock on wood,” Zalewski said.
“My wife said today we’ll be doing a lot less online shopping, a lot less ATM. She said she won’t even use the ATM anymore. Go straight to the teller right now for transactions,” Brady added.
There is video surveillance at the ATM, but Hasbrouck Heights Police were not saying Monday night whether suspects in this brazen crime were caught on camera.