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Police have arrested two Malaysian men on charges of creating fake ATM cards to withdraw more than 10 million baht from the accounts of more than 100 bank card holders.
Crime Suppression Division and immigration police arrested Goh Fook Chai, 35, and Lim Tze Chow, 34, in Sadao district, Songkhla, on Wednesday.
Police said they found the suspects carrying 81 fake bank cards, three ATM skimmers, three micro spy cameras, six plastic plates, five batteries and 72 SIM cards.
Police allege that the pair attached the skimmers to the card slots of ATM machines to read the access numbers of inserted cards, while a spy camera attached and disguised using the plastic plates captured card users entering their access codes.
Police said the pair then used the information to create fake cards. The arrests followed complaints from many commercial banks that they had lost about 10 million baht after the fake cards were used to withdraw funds from the accounts of about 100 customers, police said.
Police said the suspects confessed to the scam and told police that their gang included four more accomplices. Police were seeking arrest warrants for the other four suspects.
Representatives from the Thai Bankers' Association said all banks were doing their best to protect customers and anyone noticing irregularities in their accounts should report to their banks.
They said banks were battling ATM fraud by installing anti-skimmer equipment. When entering a personal access code, customers are advised to use their other hand to block the view of spy cameras.
Pol Col Supisarn Phakdeenaruenart, the acting commander of the Crime Suppression Division, suggested users check the card slots on ATMs. If the slots are loose, they may be skimmers. Skimmers also may be a slightly different shade than the rest of the ATM.
He said card holders should use ATMs in department stores instead of those in isolated areas, particularly in Bang Khen, Sai Mai, Chaeng Wattana and Don Muang areas.