Some 90% of U.S. consumers are not familiar with ATM skimming, new survey data suggest.

“If you’re not aware of what skimming is, then you are certainly not going to recognize” an altered ATM card slot, David Hadesty, vice president of strategic alliances and product management at Wincor Nixdorf AG, tells PaymentsSource.

For its research, the Paderborn, Germany-based ATM maker surveyed 200 U.S. consumers online who had used an ATM more than three times per month for its research. It published the results earlier this month. Marketing firm Zer0 to 5ive LLC worked with Wincor to develop the questions and launch the survey. The questions then were given to marketing research firm e-Rewards Inc.’s consumer database.

Hadesty fears consumers are seeing skimming devices but believe them to be a new machine feature. “We need to definitely do a better job communicating with banks about skimming because fraudsters are only getting more sophisticated,” he adds.

Wincor cited U.S. Secret Service data that suggest card skimming causes $350,000 in monetary losses each day and is occurring five times more frequently this year than ever before.

Many survey respondents expressed concerns about ATM security. Some 63% of respondents said they would switch banks if the other had significantly more advanced ATM security.

Some 70% of respondents said they prefer to use ATMs located inside bank branches instead of a branch teller, and 74% said they hope ATMs one day will offer the same functionality and services that tellers provide. Additionally, 70% of respondents said a bank’s ATM features and functionality are important when choosing a financial institution.

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