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Ventura County Sheriff's Office
Tuesday July 20th, 2021 :: 01:42 p.m. PDT


ATM Debit Card Skimmers

Nature of Incident: ATM Debit Card Skimmers
Report Number: 21-2600, 21-7318, 21-48865, 21-50783,21-55768, 21-83838,
21-87780, 21-88906, 21-91684
Location: Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks
Date & Time: April 2021-July 2021
Unit(s) Responsible: Thousand Oaks Police Department Patrol / East County Investigations Bureau
(S)uspects, (V)ictims, (P)arty, (D)ecedent City of Residence

ATM skimmers are still being discovered at Bank of America branches in Thousand Oaks. Fraudsters are targeting unemployment debit cards.
From January 2021 to July 2021, the Thousand Oaks Police Department, have had multiple reports of debit card skimming devices installed inside the ATM’s at Bank of America branches. In April alone, there were six “Deep Insert Skimmers” located inside walk-up ATM’s and one drive-up ATM. The skimmers were located at the Bank of America branches at 954 S. Westlake Blvd and 1440 N. Moorpark Rd. Additional skimmers have been located in June and July at these same Bank of America branches in addition to the branch at 2345 Borchard Road.

“Deep Insert Skimmers” are identified as a wafer-thin fraud device made to fit snugly and invisibly inside an ATM machine’s card acceptance slot, which captures access card data. Along with this device installed inside the ATM, the suspects will usually install a “Pin Hole Camera,” which is glued or taped to the outside of the ATM machine in place of plastic already part of the machine. The “Pin Hole Camera” is used to capture a victim’s personal identification number (PIN number). The skimming devices cannot be detected from the outside and are usually only found by ATM maintenance personnel. These skimming devices collect ATM and debit card data, which can later be used to make fraudulent withdrawals from the victim’s account.

During further investigation by the East County Investigations Financial Crimes Unit, it’s been determined that the fraudsters are targeting California Employment Development Department (EDD) debit cards. The EDD debit cards do not contain EMV chips, which encrypts the card data. Non-chipped debit cards and credit cards are vulnerable to having the data skimmed. EDD debit cards are issued by the State of California for unemployment benefits and distributed by Bank of America on behalf of EDD. Investigators believe the Bank of America ATM’s are being specifically targeted to skim the EDD cards due to their vulnerability.

The pictured suspects were captured on surveillance footage in April 2021 installing one of these skimming devices. Additional photos depict the skimming device and pin hole camera removed from one of the ATM’s. Anyone with information as to the identity of the suspects is encouraged to call investigators.

The Thousand Oaks Police Department and The Ventura County Sheriff’s Office have seen the marked increase of skimmers being used in Ventura County since the beginning of the year. It is believed this is due to the enhanced unemployment benefits still being issued.

Investigators recommend, if at all possible, enter the bank to take out cash or utilize only EMV chipped ATMs with a debit card that is outfitted with a chip, or consider utilizing a different form of payment. If these other options aren’t available take extra precautions when using an ATM, by covering the keypad with your other hand to block the view of your PIN entry.

Prepared by: Detective Paul Ferruzza
News Release Date: July 20, 2021
Media Follow-Up Contact: Detective Paul Ferruzza (805) 494-8231
[email protected]

Approved by:

Captain Denise Sliva

Ventura County Sheriff's Office
800 S Victoria Ave
Ventura, CA 93003

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 805-654-9511

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