ATM Safety and You - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

8/15/02

ATM Safety and You

"Is somebody looking at you while you're getting your money?" Becky Wright is a little more cautious when she drives thru the automated teller machine. Wednesday's fatal shooting at a Lubbock Bank of America ATM has people wondering: How safe are they?"

American State Bank, ATM Manager, Trent Paul says theres a safety camera behind every one of their machines. "It's hooked up to a VCR and it can record up to a week at a time." Some ATM's even have a helpful mirror. "We do that for the purpose of when, you're using the ATM you can see that's going on behind you, that way someone doesn't come up and grab you from behind."

The surveillance video camera is constantly on. At walkup locations, the lens catches a large area, but at the drive thru ATM machines, the surveillance camera covers a limited area, so being cautious is key. "Be alert, try not to use one until after the sun goes down, and if they have to use an ATM make sure that they're checking the area out."

Besides cameras, lights are also an important safety feature. Most banks check their bulbs regularly. Also the next time you get money at an ATM machine, turn over the receipt and check for safety tips on the back. Many banks provide them.

Officials also say it's a good idea to keep your cell phone handy in case of an emergency.

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