Case History

When Mrs V disputed six withdrawals from the automatic cash machine totalling several hundred pounds, her bank insisted that it was not their fault. Eventually she went to the police who assumed that one of her teenage sons had used her card, but Mrs V never told anyone of her PIN. Mrs V was unlucky in that she never recovered the money, nor did she receive an apology or satisfactory explanation.

However, bank cash machines can make mistakes - there have been cases of banks allocating an incorrect number, for instance. But if the bank is adamant that there has not been a mistake, the customer is in a very weak position. Even customers with a cast-iron alibi for the time of the disputed withdrawal may find the bank suspecting that the card was 'borrowed'.


National Savings Capital Bonds And Income Bonds

Debit Cards Continued

A weakness of Debit cards - and most other plastic cards at present - is the way in which transactions are authorised. In most cases, this is done by keying a number - your Personal Identification Number or PIN - into a machine. The trouble is that your PIN is not truly personal in the way that a written signature is - anyone getting hold of your card and PIN can use your account. Therefore, efficient security is vital to this type of system: you must guard your card and your PIN, but the bank or building society should also make sure that their procedures (for example, for issuing... see: Debit Cards Continued


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