What is card cloning and how to avoid it in India 2020

Card Cloning:

Cloning means making an identical copy. Card cloning or “skimming” is a technique used by malicious individuals to obtain credit/debit card details, which they use to create a fake card and then misuse it. 

Process of card cloning: 

The fraudster recruits some people such as – waiter staff, shop or petrol pump assistant, etc. as they handle huge amounts of cards. Recruited individuals are provided with a small scanning device that can be placed in a pocket and resembles a pager, scanning slot. They are instructed to swipe the customer’s credit/debit card through the device.

card cloning
Image Credit: https://cyber-cops.com/

Since the process only takes a few seconds, this can be done quietly by avoiding the gaze of the customer or any other employee. Swiping the card through the device copies the information placed on the magnetic stripe in its memory. This information is later copied to a fake card. Cards can also be cloned at ATMs where skimming devices and cameras are housed.


  • Know your card withdrawal limit
  • Do not give your card to anyone else for any transaction 
  • Never write your ATM card PIN on ATM card / ATM card cover or anywhere else
  • Never give your ATM card to the shopkeeper/merchant for doing POS transactions. Always do it yourself
  • Do not keep your birthday year or vehicle number as a pin number. They are very easy to find 
  • The nets attach a device to the ATM’s card reading slot, which extracts the card information, they also use a “security” camera to read the pin numbers being entered on the keypad. Always beware of any unknown device in the ATM. 

You should change the ATM PIN number after every few months if:

  1. Someone got a password prompt 
  2. Someone has seen the password from behind

Also Read: Online lottery fraud and how to prevent it in India 2020

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