Card Cracking Scams

American Bankers Association has warned of an increase in “card cracking” scams. Card cracking, which originates online through social media platforms, has thus far resulted in an estimated $11.6 million in stolen funds.

The scam occurs when a fraudster reaches out through social media posts by promising you quick cash. Typically they would urge you to provide them with your account credentials, whereupon they would deposit a fake check into your account. They would then make an immediate ATM withdrawal, while sharing some of the funds with you. They would then instruct you to report the card or credentials lost or stolen so that the bank will reimburse the stolen money — in the process making you a criminal accomplice.

To avoid becoming involved in card cracking scams, please be mindful of the following tips:

  • Do not respond to online solicitations for "easy money." Card cracking advertisements will suggest that this is a quick, safe way to earn extra cash. Keep in mind that easy money is rarely legal money.
  • Never share your account and PIN number. Keep this information private at all times. By sharing it with others, you expose yourself to potential fraud.
  • Do not file false fraud claims with your bank. By filing a false claim, you are a co-conspirator to fraud. Banks' detection techniques for card cracking are constantly improving and suspicious claims will be investigated.
  • Report suspicious posts linked with scams. If you notice postings that appear to be linked with a possible scam, report them to the social media site. There is usually a drop down menu near the post to allow for easy reporting.

The infographic below illustrates how a scam of this type is typically conducted.


To avoid card cracking scams, you should always avoid online solicitations for easy money, never share an account number or PIN, never to file a false fraud claim with a bank and report suspicious social media posts immediately.

If you suspect identity theft or fraud involving your North Shore Bank account:

  1. Contact Customer Support at North Shore Bank — (978) 573-1300.
  2. Contact the following three credit bureaus to have a fraud alert placed on your credit report.
  3. File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at
  4. File a report with your local law enforcement agency