Nearly a dozen reports of fraudulent ATM withdrawals have Santa Barbara detectives searching for a four-person team suspected to be responsible.
The suspects have stolen “thousands of dollars,” according to a statement from Lieutenant Bryan Jensen of the Santa Barbara Police Department. Most of these withdrawals occurred in the early morning hours over a two-week period, occasionally even alongside legitimate customers.
The police department said the debit card information was most likely stolen using a “skimming device,” a device that is placed over card readers on ATMs to steal information.
The ATM where these withdrawals originated from was the Bank of America Branch at 3790 State Street. The debit cards affected were primarily California Employment Development Department cards, which typically don’t have EMV security chips.
The police department has warned the public to be cautious of ATMs that appear to be damaged or altered, and to opt for in-person cash withdrawals when possible. Anybody with information about the suspects should contact Detective Kyle Rapp at (805) 897-2331 or firstname.lastname@example.org.