When an ATM screen shows your card as restricted, that means your bank is hard at work protecting you from fraud or some other problem. Banks, credit unions, brokerage accounts and other debit card issuers take great pains to prevent fraud, and you are the beneficiary of their problem-detection systems. By freezing a suspect card, thieves are stopped from using it to raid your account and steal your money.
If an ATM card is restricted, you won't be able to use it, as it has likely been frozen to protect you from fraud.
Causes of Restriction
How to Respond
How to Protect Your Cards
The Federal Trade Commission says you should protect your card’s PIN by never disclosing it to others, not carrying it in your wallet or pocketbook and not writing it down on deposit slips, envelopes and other papers that might be looked at. The FTC also advises you to promptly check your account statements each month and look for unauthorized card usage. It also warns against disclosing your card number or bank account number over the phone. Finally, it advises you to cut up old cards before throwing them away.
- Federal Trade Commission: Lost or Stolen Credit, ATM, and Debit Cards
- CNBC: Here's Another Reason to Think Twice Before Using Your Debit Card
- CreditCards.com: 7 Reasons Your Credit Card Gets Blocked
- WJLA: Chase Puts Restrictions on Debit Card Users Due to Target Breach
- Cleveland.com: What Happens When Your Bank Asks Strange Questions to Verify Identity?