Monday, September 7, 2009

HOAX: Punching your PIN in reverse (a.k.a. BPI Management Advisory) - reposting from a Facebook tag

HOAX: Punching your PIN in reverse (a.k.a. BPI Management Advisory)
You may have just received this advice from friends and colleagues.
The tip sounds perfectly sensible and plausible, and it's just the sort of thing that most of us crime-harassed urbanites would pass on.

From the BPI Management:

When a thief forces you to take money from the ATM, do not argue or resist. You might not know what he or she might do to you. What you should do is to punch your PIN in the reverse mode.

I.e. if your PIN # is 1254, you punch 4521.The moment you punch in the reverse mode, the money will come out, but will be stuck into the machine half way out and it will alert the Police (security) without the notice of the thief. Every ATM has it; it is specially made to signify danger and help. Not everyone is aware of this.

Forward or Alert your loved ones, friends and those you care about.


Sad to say, I did some research on this and found that this advice does not come from BPI. By googling the first three sentences, I found that this message has been circulated in the Middle East, UK, India and many other places. And not by Pinoys either.

In fact, the following comment was given by a Paetechie, a Pinoy techie blogger who specializes in security:

Note that this is an old hoax email circulating on the Internet and now resurrected again. There was a proposal in the US about this but wasn't approved. Coming from a banking industry "slave" this is not true. There are PINs about there that's a palindrome, meaning they spell the same backwards. And if it's true, the police would just arrive late. Just hope the ATM you're using has a surveillance camera to catch the face of your attacker.


Now, to those of you who believe in passing on semi-dubious advice like the BPI advisory because it's "better to be safe than sorry," that's really your call. But before you do, think about this:

Say your friend or loved one does follow the advice, and say that it backfires on him/her, resulting in more trauma or injury, could you forgive yourself?

The chain of hoax stops here.

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