Do you COVER your fingers when keying your PIN?

Do you COVER your fingers when keying your PIN? - A picture of an Automated Teller Machine a.k.a. ATM. Taken with permission from http://farm1.static.flickr.com/125/389030408_8bff4d8ced.jpg?v=0 .
Singapore
June 21, 2007 11:39am CST
I am guessing that most of us have at least one bank account. Whether it comes with bells and whistles or not, it at least allows us to withdraw our money via an Automated Teller Machine a.k.a. ATM. Normally, I try to enforce a comfortable distance when the person immediately in front of me is at the ATM. This way, I hope to hint to the guy behind me that he should maintain the same distance I maintained when it is my turn proper. Fortunately, most people are nice enough to take the hint. :P So when it gets to be me, I still like to play it safe by covering my fingers when keying in my PIN. I normally use my wallet to cover my fingers "casually". I may be paranoid, but I think playing it safe is better than crying over spilled milk. It's not that I have any impressive amount to tempt even small-time robbers - but my money is my own. Even if it is a mere dollar, why should I let it benefit some nameless robbers? So, do you cover your fingers too when you are keying in your PIN? Or how do you "protect" yourself? Or are you so confident that you wouldn't mind anyone looking over your shoulders? Do share your thoughts. ;-)
28 people like this
79 responses
• Canada
21 Jun 07
No, they say you should but i don't see how knowing someones pin without haveing the card to access the money will change anything. I think it will only make a difference if someone tries to steal your card, but hopefully you'll notice your card is missing and call the bank to deactivate it.
4 people like this
• Singapore
21 Jun 07
First they know your pin.. then they pick your card. Easy. Simple.
2 people like this
@whyaskq (7532)
• Singapore
21 Jun 07
I do not cover my fingers when I key my PIN at ATMs. I used two hands to key in my PIN and I am rather nimble when keying in. The only person who can see what I see is the CCV that is high up above. That is the one I am more concerned rather than the people peeping over my shoulders. How safe can it be when the keyboard produces sound. A blind person would be able to pick up the keys entered quite easily since they are known to be sharp with their ears.
3 people like this
• Singapore
21 Jun 07
Actually I don't think the CCTV is supposed to see your pin...
1 person likes this
@th_sia (164)
• Malaysia
21 Jun 07
I don't cover with my finger. I believe my body is large enough to block the vision from the back. I feel quite secure with today's ATM machine. I hope i am right.
3 people like this
• Singapore
21 Jun 07
Oh yea? What if someone peeks over your shoulders? :P
2 people like this
21 Jun 07
I do cover when I am keying in my PIN.I have heard of too many scary stories, the latest being about mu husband's friend's wife from whome the card was stolen by some guys who distracted her for a moment and saw her PIN.then they snatched the card from her and ran away.Withing the next 30 mins which it took for her to call up her husband who then cancelled the card,about £800 had already been withdrawn.So I am very careful about which ATM machines I use.I normaly prefer instore ones where there is more security.
3 people like this
• Singapore
21 Jun 07
What a lethal and unfortunate combination. :(
2 people like this
@ladyluna (7004)
• United States
21 Jun 07
Hello Lordwarwizard, Nawww. Most keypads that I use these days rotate, from left to right. So, I can turn the unit to the left or right to protect my pin from inquiring minds. I never use ATM's, so I needn't worry about that part of the issue. I only use credit cards that offer maximum protection against identity fraud. I always take my receipts. And, we shred all financial documents. Plus, I regularly check my credit report, to make sure no fraudulent activity is happening. I'm pretty confident. Yet, recent news indicates that 1/3 of Americans have had their personal I.D.s stolen, whether they realize it or not. So, diligence is the key.
3 people like this
• Singapore
21 Jun 07
Wow, that advanced? We don't have rotating keypads in Singapore.
2 people like this
• United States
21 Jun 07
I only do it at the ATM when there is someone behind me. I am usually not too worried if there is no one behind me. Now, when I am entering my PIN number at the register for debit-based transactions, then I am a little more weary to cover my fingers and not let anyone around me look at it. I kind of position my body in-between the terminal and other people who might gawk, but it's usually just a precaution. I really don't think there is too much that can be done with just a PIN number, but you might just call me naive.
3 people like this
• Singapore
21 Jun 07
Well if you can hide it any way, that would suffice. ;-)
2 people like this
@rusty2rusty (6766)
• Defiance, Ohio
21 Jun 07
Oh yes. I do cover my fingers when keying in my pin number. that is a very very good question. It is also something everyone should do and be taught. I use my purse to help cover what I am keying in. I also cover my fingers up when I am supermarkets using my debit card. To many people are right up next to you when you go tot use it. I always fear that person is going to try and learn my pin number. Than steal my card. I have had to ask several people to move back while I put my pin number in. Some people understood while others got real huffy with me..but the more huffy they got..the longer I stood there til they complied.
3 people like this
• Singapore
21 Jun 07
Yea! I don't want to have nightmares thinking if that lady with whiskers behind me had learned my PIN or not. :P _______________ |@@@@| |####| |@@@@| |####| |@@@@| |####| \@@@@| |####/ \@@@| |###/ `@@|_____|##' (O) .-'''''-. .' * * * `. : * * : : ~ A S C I I ~ : : ~ A W A R D ~ : : * * : jgs `. * * * .' `-.....-'
2 people like this
@tmlnmr (1850)
• Canada
21 Jun 07
Hey wizzard, I have a few bank accounts and when I am at the atm and there is someone in front of me I do the same as you. I will leave ample space to give them their privacy. The people behind me will normally do the same. I will use my body to shield the numbers from the prople behind me and the person beside me, if there is one. I don't actually cover my fingers while punching in the numbers. Where I am as well there isn't very often that there is someone else in there with you so that is not a problem. When I am making a purchase,say at walmart and use my card there is a shield on either side of the keypad so that people cannot see what is being pressed. I will also shield it with my body as added protection. Like you they would look at my balance and laugh anyway! :)
2 people like this
• Singapore
21 Jun 07
I try to shield with my body as well as my wallet or free hand.. double precaution. :P
2 people like this
@tmlnmr (1850)
• Canada
21 Jun 07
Funny how things can be so different from one part of the world to another. Not that I don't have the street smarts for stuff like that I just know when I need to use them. If I went there to visit you it would be a very different story! ;)
2 people like this
• Singapore
22 Jun 07
I am just paranoid. :P
2 people like this
@SmokePiff (437)
• United States
22 Jun 07
no i don't cover the keys when i mac out money. but i do use like 4 fingers to put my code in so if there was some1 tryin to get my pin then they would have a lil harder time tryin get it. plus i keep my ears wide open and listen to see if some1 walkin up behind me. never had to tell some1 to back up but i'm pretty sure i would if i had to
2 people like this
• Singapore
22 Jun 07
You must look like a porcupine on alert when you are at the ATM. :P
1 person likes this
• United States
22 Jun 07
lol gotta stay on alert cuz im goin fight if some1 tries to rob me
2 people like this
• Singapore
22 Jun 07
*wink*
1 person likes this
• United States
21 Jun 07
I don't usually go inside the bank when I use the ATM. We have a drive-up ATM in the drive thru so I usually use that. I'm sure it's hard for someone to see my pin because my car is blocking the machine.
2 people like this
• Singapore
21 Jun 07
That's interesting. A drive-up ATM.. not sure if we have that here.
2 people like this
• United States
21 Jun 07
Really? We have one at just about every bank. I couldn't imagine life without it. LOL.
2 people like this
• Singapore
22 Jun 07
Because we are a small country with excellent infrastructure. You can practically walk everywhere if you don't mind. :P
1 person likes this
@kelly60 (4548)
• United States
21 Jun 07
I agree, I do not want anyone watching me key in my pin number whether at the ATM or my debit card pin at the cash register at the store or anywhere else. It drives me crazy when people crowd me when trying to complete one of these transactions. Then I had one yesterday who made things worse by leaning practically over top of me. I think that he was just trying to rush me, but he made me take much longer than I would have because I was not about to punch in my pin number until he backed off a bit. He finally took the hint and at least leaned back a little. I then covered my fingers, but in this case, I made it obvious that it was because of him!
2 people like this
• Singapore
21 Jun 07
I don't care - I TAKE MY TIME while waiting for my receipt and make sure my account balance is not flashed on the screen before I leave the ATM. No rushing me.
1 person likes this
@kelly60 (4548)
• United States
21 Jun 07
I know, I was not about to let him rush me by crowding me. He found out the hard way that crowding me just slowed things down instead of speeding them up. It may have intimidated some people into rushing through their transactions, but instead, I turned and gave him a look when it was time to punch in my pin number rather than keying it in. After hesitating for a bit, I think that it sunk in that I was not going to key it in with him so close. He could not step back much because someone was right behind him, but he did not need to crowd me either.
2 people like this
• Singapore
22 Jun 07
If you seldom use ATMs, here.. you might be intimidated. I just get used to it on put on my thickest skin.:P
1 person likes this
@MsTickle (24994)
• Australia
23 Jun 07
They might watch me enter my pin and remember it but it won't do them any good unless they have my card as well and the chance of them getting hold of my is neglibible.
• Singapore
23 Jun 07
What's so difficult about robbing you?
1 person likes this
@MsTickle (24994)
• Australia
25 Jun 07
Means and opportunity for a start. I'm talking a debit card, not a credit card. I don't access my credit card at ATMs and it doesn't have a pin. A robber would feel pretty silly to go to the trouble of robbing someone with a large possibility of only a few dollars in the account.
• Turkey
22 Jun 07
Normally I don't cover my fingers when entering the Pin, but I always check to see who is standing behind me and how close they are before I start. Also I enter my Pin using two fingers, so infact my whole hand is covering the keypad anyway, which would make it difficult to see from behind.
2 people like this
• Singapore
22 Jun 07
They can always shuffle forward when you are not looking.
1 person likes this
• Turkey
23 Jun 07
If they do move forward I normally tend to move to the side alittle so to block their view. I forgot to add that I always use the ATM in front of our compound enterance, which is good as the site security guards can see me.
@misheleen73 (6037)
• United States
22 Jun 07
I use drive through ATM's especially when alone. Being a woman I hate the idea of "standing" there at the ATM with my back to the world. If at a drive trhough, I can speed away if need be. SO I don't need to cover my fingers, as no one is standing anywhere near my car. If I use my ATM/Debit card at the store, sometimes people do stand a little too close for comfort, then I shield my PIN with either my purse or something. Usually the Debit machine is located by a nifty shelf used for writing checks. I set my purse there, and that effectively shields my PIN. :)
2 people like this
• Singapore
22 Jun 07
Just make sure you tuck your card back in before you speed. :P
2 people like this
• United States
22 Jun 07
I wull try :P and how do you know I speed ?? :)
1 person likes this
@charms88 (7541)
• Philippines
22 Jun 07
I seldom use the ATM baby. If I need to withdraw money from the ATM, I always use the one with the private cubicle. No one is allowed to stay inside except when its your turn to do transaction. There's also a security guard outside the cubicle. Once inside the cubicle, I don't cover my fingers while keying my PIN. I am the only one there and don't feel the need to be cautious. There's nothing much in my ATM really. :)
• Singapore
22 Jun 07
Somehow we don't have many private cubicle kinda ATM here. Some are located at really busy junctions.
1 person likes this
@charms88 (7541)
• Philippines
22 Jun 07
I have one bank with private cubicle about 2 blocks away from my house. I don't have the patient to line up in queue especially on a busy street.
1 person likes this
@byfaithonly (10716)
• United States
22 Jun 07
The only time I really use a pin number out and about is in the stores when I use a debit card. It really annoys me when someone is standing 'too close' for comfort and I always make a point of standing so I put my body between my fingers and the person. Any time I see that someone else is putting in a number I will back off to give them some comfort zone and privacy.
2 people like this
• Singapore
22 Jun 07
You can of course glare at that person lol..
1 person likes this
@byfaithonly (10716)
• United States
22 Jun 07
LOL - true, glaring does work for some people but for me it seems to always end in a big fight (kids mainly) or I feel bad afterwards :( I guess I have a very mean or angry glare that brings out the worst in people.
1 person likes this
@ahgong (10064)
• Singapore
22 Jun 07
Usually I just stand real close to the machine, using my body to block the view of the person behind me. Sometimes I will be like you, use my wallet to block the side view "casually". What I usually ensure is that I pick up my card first, then the money. Then the receipt if I had requested for one.
2 people like this
• Singapore
22 Jun 07
Just don't be nervous and everything will be fine. After all, it is just an ATM transaction lol. :P
1 person likes this
@ahgong (10064)
• Singapore
25 Jun 07
yeah I know. But you know, some of these atm machines are placed at some really isolate places where one does not feel really safe when using but has no choice due to insufficient monies to take a cab home. There are also places where the atm is located and the area is well known for crime. One can never be too careful when it comes to money.
@castleghost (1304)
• United States
21 Jun 07
I have to admit that I have only used my debit card at the ATM just one time. I just recently decided to get a debit card. I prefer to just run inside the bank to do most of my banking. I withdraw a lump sum of cash on Friday to do me for a weeks time. I got the debit card just in case of an emergency.
2 people like this
• United States
21 Jun 07
Sorry that it didn't answer your question. No, the one time I used the debit card at the ATM I didn't try to cover the keypad or anything. I was the only person there.
2 people like this
• Singapore
22 Jun 07
I think I am paranoid lol because I will still cover my fingers even if there is no one there. You will never know when someone might suddenly appear.:P
1 person likes this
@maddysmommy (16233)
• United States
21 Jun 07
I use my body to shield the ATM machine LOL i have broad shoulders so its a little difficult to see over the top without me noticing. I am always careful and give others space too when they are in front of me.
• Singapore
21 Jun 07
But what about people taller than you? Or if they tip toed?
1 person likes this
@maddysmommy (16233)
• United States
21 Jun 07
Hmmm good point, elbow them to back off maybe? LMAO
2 people like this
• Singapore
23 Jun 07
i do not really cover my hand...but seeing that my singaporean bf does that most of the time, i guess it really rub it on me to do so...but everytime i caught myself doing that (covering my fingers while keying in my pin) i felt so much like a loser :D normally i don't do that...i'll always be the naive woman who thinks that everyone in this world is good!!
2 people like this
• Singapore
23 Jun 07
We are paranoid creatures lol. :P