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File photo Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland

Elderly people warned about ATM scam gang

The scam is believed to be in operation in parts of north Dublin and elderly people have been warned to be careful.

ELDERLY PEOPLE HAVE been warned to be on the lookout for a gang targeting people as they withdraw money at ATMs.

The scam is in operation in parts of north Dublin and is believed to involve two different ways from getting money from the person at the ATM.

In the first, two or three people stand behind the elderly person and try to observe as they enter their PIN on the keypad. While their card is still in the machine, one of the gang tells the person that they have dropped some money – and then take the card from the machine when the person bends down to get it.

The other tactic used by the gang involves dropping an ATM card on the ground, similar to the one used by the person who is withdrawing money. They return the card to the elderly person while stealing their card from the machine, giving the thieves time to use the card before it is reported stolen.

The warning was shared by the Balbriggan Community Policing Forum which said the scam has been targeted at elderly people in recent weeks. The group called on people to alert older people to the scam in a bid to prevent theft.

A similar con during the summer is believed to have netted at least €30,000, according o the Irish Payment Services Organisation, as thieves carried out several similar deceptions.

The IPSO has warned customers to cover the PIN pad when using an ATM and report any unusual activity to their bank.

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