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Old 28.11.2011, 21:37
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Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

Hi,

I know we are always told this but this is a reminder to people - ALWAYS cover your pin when you are using your cash or credit cards.

I used the SBB ticket machines at Zurich airport and made sure there was no one behind watching me. Unbeknown to me, however, I was being observed from a viewing gallery above me.

After purchasing my train ticket using my Maestro card I went down to the railway platform. While I was standing there I was hit on the back by a man who was in a bit of state and was trying to get to the "main station". I of course helped him and directed him to the correct platform. I then got on my train and headed home.

I only realised my purse was missing the following morning and then realised the guy on the platform had probably taken it. Then when I went on the Internet I found that our account had been emptied.

Our bank (not sure if I can name it here) was not very sympathetic, despite the fact that the police recovered video footage of 3 different men using my maestro card. These men were well dressed and posing as passengers at the airport - two with wheelie bags and a third with a smart rucksack. They were clearly part of a gang operating at the airport.

Ultimately I know that it was my fault - but I was still disappointed that the bank did not alert us at any point to the unusual transactions that were taking place. Until then we had never withdrawn more than 200 chf in cash at any one time - naively assuming there was a limit on cash withdrawals as there is in the UK. That evening thousands left our account including a large withdrawal at 00.01 in Winterthur! It turns out we could have withdrawn 5000 chf a day in cash.

The lesson is COVER your pin number.

H
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Old 28.11.2011, 21:44
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

nothing you can do about it. these crooks are usually one step ahead of normal people and are much smarter and sophisticated than many of us think. If they want your card they will get it...simple as that. How did you not miss your purse till the next morning though?

In any case, hope you get it sorted with the bank and that it will not happen again. btw who actually covers this loss? is it the banks insurance or who since the money has been pulled out of the bank anyways?
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Old 28.11.2011, 21:47
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

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btw who actually covers this loss?
You need to ask?
It's us, the customers!
Just because it's spread amongst all of us doesn't mean we don't all pay for it.
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Old 28.11.2011, 21:53
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

Hi,

I didn't miss my purse because I had my bag with me when I got home and did not have cause to use my purse again that evening.

No one covers the loss - the banks cover these thefts on a discretionary basis but not in full. We got 26% back and were told by the Swiss Financial Ombudsman that we'd done well to get anything back.

I hope others learn from my experience.
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Old 28.11.2011, 21:58
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

I can only take out 200 a day on my bank card, assuming I have that much in the account to start with.

If you can take out 1000's and don't usually do that then it might be worth asking the bank to reduce the amount you can withdraw.
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Old 28.11.2011, 22:00
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

Really sorry to hear about your situation, that's pretty nasty. Hope you're OK and your faith in humanity hasn't been tarnished.
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Old 28.11.2011, 22:25
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

So sorry to hear this. I find the bank's position unfair. I think you should name them for being so unsympathetic jobsworths. They may be within the rights of the small print. However it sounds to me like you were done over by a professional gang. You were not particularly careless. There should be a responsibility on the airport and bank to make the locations of the machines as safe as possible from such gangs. Having the machine located over a viewing gallery was not something you decided. You expect it to be safe. Not the first time it happened and won't be the last. I am having the cash limits reduced on my cards immediately, just incase. What chance do normal folks have a against gangs like these ? If I were you, and you have the inclination, I would write the bank a letter every few weeks until maybe you can get more out of them. Thanks for letting others know that we might not suffer the same awful experience and best of luck with everything now.
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Old 28.11.2011, 22:33
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

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It turns out we could have withdrawn 5000 chf a day in cash.
I thought that it was only 3000/day?

Tom
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Old 28.11.2011, 22:45
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

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I thought that it was only 3000/day?

Tom
CS has a 5000/day withdrawal limit and purchase limit as a default (can be changed) - 10,000/month.
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Old 28.11.2011, 23:06
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

Write to your bank and tell them you are going to send details of your story to all the main newspapers including 20min, Blick, beobachter.ch.

Also tell them you are going to write it up on your Facebook wall.

The last thing Swiss banks need right now is bad publicity and reduced public confidence.

Cheers,
Nick
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Old 28.11.2011, 23:42
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

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Also tell them you are going to write it up on your Facebook wall.
Put your PIN in the message, so anyone finding a card can test it and know if it's yours or not.
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Old 28.11.2011, 23:50
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

I'm so sorry to hear about that. That must've been a real shock for you.
Just be relieved that you are fine and well, and that what was taken can be replaced.

Thanks also for sharing with us so we can be a little more aware. I usually cover my hand when I'm typing my NIP, but you know when you've got a coat over one arm, a heavy bag on your shoulder and a shopping bag in the other, you don't really think about it.

As for the banks, I like what nickatbasel said - you should try it!
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Old 29.11.2011, 00:02
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

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I know we are always told this but this is a reminder to people - ALWAYS cover your pin when you are using your cash or credit cards.

I used the SBB ticket machines at Zurich airport and made sure there was no one behind watching me. Unbeknown to me, however, I was being observed from a viewing gallery above me.
My simple PIN security tricks:

Never enter a PIN using only 1 finger, always place 2 fingers over 2 digits next to each other but only actually putting pressure on the one you wish to enter. As an extra precaution I also use one number twice in a row with the finger flicking quickly so as not to be detected.
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Old 29.11.2011, 00:16
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

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My simple PIN security tricks:

Never enter a PIN using only 1 finger, always place 2 fingers over 2 digits next to each other but only actually putting pressure on the one you wish to enter. As an extra precaution I also use one number twice in a row with the finger flicking quickly so as not to be detected.
and add a couple of pretend number punches during the process- but that won't work if you are at a bank machine that does a loud beep as you tap in each number ( eg: Basel airport)
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Old 29.11.2011, 20:19
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

I have to say my experience with Swiss banks so far is that they seem to be living 15 years in the past compared to the UK.

Most of them still don't have a clue what a true "debit card" is!

I've noticed several little things that don't make sense in the modern age, one of which being that one of my gf's cards only lets her check balance after she's used it to pay something (or it may be that one of the stores we go to has a machine that only lets her do this, I'm not sure which way around it is!)
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Old 29.11.2011, 21:41
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

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Hi,

I didn't miss my purse because I had my bag with me when I got home and did not have cause to use my purse again that evening.

No one covers the loss - the banks cover these thefts on a discretionary basis but not in full. We got 26% back and were told by the Swiss Financial Ombudsman that we'd done well to get anything back.

I hope others learn from my experience.
What an awful thing to have happened. Thank you for sharing so that we can all be more vigilant. Perhaps I'm being naive but is it possible that your household insurance might cover you for some of the loss? To only get 26% back sounds so harsh.
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Old 29.11.2011, 21:51
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

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I thought that it was only 3000/day?

Tom
One can change the daily maximum and the monthly max too - just speak to the bank person. Remember, if your daily limit is Sfr5000 then another withdrawal at 1 min past midnite makes it Sfr10,000 that you lose - should you not notice your card missing immediately.

The daily and monthly max is only for ATM withdrawals.
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Old 29.11.2011, 21:57
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

Many years ago I was using the Vita Parcours at Lange Erlen and locked my bike to railing. I had a saddlebag where I kept my lights and pump in. Utilising the grill area were a few rough-looking types. Got back to find my saddlebags had been rifled through and the contents taken. My own fault..I know...I know...

Anyway, the next day I went to Landis and got a couple of mousetraps to shove in the saddlebags - to deal with the chronic mouse infestation in my apartment building's veloraum of course... I just had to remember they were there whenever I was putting shopping in!

Cheers,
Nick
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Old 30.11.2011, 19:19
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

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he banks cover these thefts on a discretionary basis but not in full. We got 26% back and were told by the Swiss Financial Ombudsman that we'd done well to get anything back.
That's outrageous. I would not take that lying down at all.
As another poster says, go to the media -kick up an almighty bloody fuss. They would not get away with this in the UK.
It's only because the Swiss are (in general) such wusses about complaining about anything, that they do.
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Old 30.11.2011, 19:26
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Re: Purse & Pin Number Stolen at Airport

I tend to have a feeder account, meaning my EC card is linked to the very low balance current account and this is fed by standing order from another account for which I dont have ebanking or an ec card.
This was put in place more to counter the "fraudulent letters" problems which was rife some years back, rather than for EC card theft
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