Safeguard against skimming

APCA has announced a new campaign in the fight against card fraud - Safeguard Against Skimming - an education program for retailers on how to protect their business and customers from card skimming.

Safeguard Against Skimming was officially launched in Sydney on 18 March 2011 by the CEO of the Australian Crime Commission (ACC), John Lawler APM. More than 50 stakeholders including retailers, point-of-sale (POS) service providers, financial institutions, card schemes and law enforcement agencies attended the event.

The APCA-led program was developed collaboratively by industry experts with strong support from the ACC, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and the NSW Police.

The program comprises two education videos, an information brochure and other related training materials for retailers. It is designed to promote awareness about card skimming and proactively engage retailers in the fight against fraud by arming them with the information they need to prevent criminal activities on their premises.

Safeguard against skimming

John Lawler APM, CEO of the ACC (left) with APCA CEO Chris Hamilton at the launch.

Financial institutions and other POS service providers are encouraged to participate in the program and to start rolling out the program to retailers. The information brochure and an excerpt from the staff training video can be viewed at

Australian consumers make more than 10 million debit and credit card purchases each day using in-store terminals. While this is a safe and convenient method of payment, card skimming fraud is a growing global problem and, as was seen in the well-publicised attacks on in-store terminals in 2009, Australia has been targeted.

Executive Director of the Australian Retailers Association, Russell Zimmerman has urged retailers to contact their POS service providers to ensure they get full use out of the Safeguard Against Skimming training.

APCA launched complementary initiatives in 2010 including guidelines for merchants on how to enhance the security around POS terminals and a consumer awareness program on how to Protect Your PIN. At the launch, Mr Lawler commended the industry for its crime prevention strategies and for its efforts in hardening the environment against organised crime.


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