ATMs are located almost everywhere in Georgia, but the ease with which anyone can withdraw cash should not blind one to the safety risks. Thieves may lurk around these machines, and in some cases, ATM users wind up having their identity stolen, too. The following are some tips to follow to minimize the risk for theft or physical injury. It all starts with choosing a location; it should ideally be inside the bank where there is 24-hour surveillance.

Failing to find an ATM inside a bank, users should try to find one in a well-lit area with continual traffic. If it’s in a glass booth, all the better. Familiar locations are better than unfamiliar because one would be more likely to tell when something is wrong.

Users should be aware of their surroundings. It’s recommended to decline the help of strangers when dealing with a malfunctioning ATM; instead, users can simply cancel the transaction and contact the bank. When possible, it’s helpful to have a friend come along and have the card ready when approaching the ATM.

Thieves will sometimes install card readers, cameras and keypad readers on these machines, so users should look them over for any damage. Once they withdraw the cash, they should put it away immediately so as not to entice thieves. Users should drive up as closely to ATMs as possible.

Those who are assaulted at an ATM may be able to receive compensation for their injuries if there is evidence that the property owner failed in maintaining a reasonably safe environment. For instance, the owner, knowing that the area is a crime-infested one, may have failed to incorporate safety measures that would deter thieves. Of course, victims must be clear of any negligence themselves to be eligible. To see if they have a case under premises liability law, victims may want to consult a lawyer.