To further enhance the security of ATM services, the overseas ATM cash withdrawal capability for all ATM cards (including debit cards and credit cards) issued by authorized institutions (AIs) in Hong Kong is pre-set as “deactivated” with effect from today (1 March 2013). This is to prevent fraudsters from withdrawing cash from a cardholder’s account at ATMs outside Hong Kong using counterfeit magnetic-stripe cards with the card data obtained from card skimming.
Cardholders are reminded to activate the overseas cash withdrawal capability (through ATMs, online banking, phone banking or bank branches as provided by the relevant card issuing banks) before travelling, if they think they may need to withdraw cash from ATMs outside Hong Kong (including those in Mainland, Taiwan and Macau). They could specify an expiry date for the activation period and set an overseas ATM cash withdrawal limit that is lower than the limit for local cash withdrawal. Cardholders are reminded not to set the valid period longer than needed to avoid reducing the effectiveness of such security measure. Cardholders should contact their own card issuing banks for details if in doubt.
The Hong Kong Monetary Authority will continue to work with the banking industry to monitor the latest technological developments, and will review from time to time the need to introduce additional security measures where necessary.
Hong Kong Monetary Authority
1 March 2013