Personal identification number

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Personal Identification Number

Commonly called a PIN. A password that a person uses to access an ATM with one's debit card, though they are increasingly being used for all debit card transactions. A PIN protects the person who owns the card from identity theft as well as the risk that a thief can steal the card and then use it without limit. Assuming the PIN is randomly generated when the card is issued and the potential thief has no other information, the thief has approximately a 0.06% chance of guessing the PIN when using the card. It was invented by James Goodfellow, who was also instrumental in developing the ATM itself.

Personal identification number (PIN).

A personal identification number is a combination of numbers, letters, or both that you use to access your checking and savings accounts, credit card accounts, or investment accounts electronically.

You also need a PIN to authorize certain debit card purchases as well as for identification in other situations, such as accessing cell phone messages.

A PIN is one way to help protect your accounts against unauthorized use since presumably no other person would know the four- to six-letter code you have chosen. PINs are not foolproof, however, if you don't take steps to ensure that your code remains private.

References in periodicals archive ?
In fact, most residents interviewed complained of feeling unsafe when attendants ask for their PIN numbers.
DAMASCUS, (SANA) -- The Commercial Bank of Syria on Tuesday issued a warning to its clients that a gang of scammers that steal ATM cards or duplicate them or steal PIN numbers from unwary clients making withdrawals from ATM machines.
It is always a good idea to be vigilant of your surroundings and protect your pin number.
A CASHPOINT machine has become the perfect target for card thieves - because a "security" mirror shows Midland customers typing in their pin numbers.
Carry information like your Social Security Number (SSN) or any PIN numbers or passwords in your purse or wallet;
Do not write your PIN number down in any way, shape or form.
I understand that in future I will have to know every pin number to every card before I can venture into any shop, and I understand that this is all done for my own good, as the new chip is far more difficult to counterfeit and there is no such thing as a fake number.
The thieves work in small groups and single out customers at bank machines where they 'shoulder surf' card users as they key in their four digit pin number.
He somehow got both the ATM card and the four-digit pin number for accounts, mostly at credit unions, Williams said.
That way if someone's trying to use it to open a new account, transfer funds, or whatever, they couldn't do a thing without also providing that PIN number they wouldn't have,'' she said.
Saving your personal banking details on your computer is as daft as keeping your credit card PIN number on a slip of paper in your wallet," said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos Anti-Virus.
Cluley warned users that saving security details on a computer was comparable to 'keeping your credit card PIN number on a slip of paper in your wallet'.