Using an ATM may be an indispensable convenience, but is it safe? In the overwhelming majority of cases, the answer is yes. ATMs have been used successfully by hundreds of millions of Americans over three decades: Millions of ATM transactions take place daily without incident, which is great news for millions of ATM users who have no intention of trading in their 24 hour access to funds.
On the other hand, there is no such thing as too much safety when using an ATM. Taking a little extra time and planning to find ATM locations that are carefully-situated, well-lit, and security-oriented will not only make your experience safer, but also more relaxed.
As a member of the CO-OP ATM network, Boulder Dam Credit Union goes the extra mile to make sure members have access to the largest network of ATMs nationwide, with an emphasis on safety. “The CO-OP ATM network has nearly 30,000 surcharge-free ATMs, but simply offering our members widespread access is not enough,” says Eric Estes, CEO. “We’re also pleased to belong to an ATM network that prides itself on convenient, well-lit locations, so that our members can make safer choices while still visiting an in-network ATM.”
Following a few basic guidelines can also help. The first rule is simplest: Never use an ATM unless you feel completely comfortable. Whether it’s a dark street or suspicious people lurking nearby that have you feeling nervous, following your gut is better than risking your safety. Be aware of your surroundings and cautious of strangers. Don’t accept help from people you don’t know, and make sure no one is observing you when you enter your PIN.
Choose locations that are visible and well-trafficked. If you can, combine your trip to the ATM with some friendly shopping. Thanks to the CO-OP ATM network’s partnership with 7-Eleven stores, it’s possible to access your account while picking up a six-pack of soda and a bag of chips.
“Americans love their ATMs,” Eric Estes says. “We’re constantly looking for ways to enhance that experience. We can’t think of a better enhancement than belonging to an ATM network that places a high premium on helping our members make safe choices.”