A person enters their pin number unaware someone is
watching. Photo by Gerard O'Brien.
Shoulder-surfing ''mongrels'' have prompted a warning
Recent reports of shoulder surfing - where offenders watch a
person enter their eftpos pin number - are on the rise across
Otago and Southland.
That increase has prompted a warning from Senior Sergeant
Dave Scott, of the Dunedin-based Southern District Command
He said offenders appeared to be working in pairs.
Once the pin number had been obtained, the victim would be
followed and later distracted by an offender while the other
would enter their property to steal the card.
While police would not say whether the offenders were an
organised group, or where the offending had taken place, he
confirmed police had ''alerted local supermarkets'' about the
''Inquiries are on going and we are certainly trying to
He urged card users to always shield the key pad when
inputting their pin number.
''We want to put out a general warning for people to be aware
and take some personal responsibility ... There are mongrels
out there, so you need to make it as difficult as possible
for them to ply their trade.''
A spokeswoman for Foodstuffs, which owns Pak'n Save, New
World and Four Square stores, said consumers needed to take
care when inputting their pin to ensure others could not see
the numbers and use that information to their advantage.
A Countdown spokeswoman confirmed police had contacted the
company about the incidents, and ''we'll ensure our teams are
aware of this''.