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The FDIC deposit insurance rules have undergone a series of changes starting in the fall of 2008. As a result, certain previously published information related to FDIC insurance coverage may not reflect the current rules. For details about the changes, visit Changes in FDIC Deposit Insurance Coverage. For more information about FDIC insurance, go to www.fdic.gov/deposit/deposits/index.html or call toll-free 1-877-ASK-FDIC (1-877-275-3342). For the hearing-impaired, the number is 1-800-925-4618.

Illustration of a card being inserted into ATM. The screen displays "Your ATM" with the options to "Enjoy the Benefits", "Resolve a Problem", "Prevent ATM Crimes", and "Keep Fees Down". Spring 2004

ATMs and You: Tips on Self-Service Banking
A special report to help you reap the benefits, save on fees and protect against potential problems including errors, theft and fraud.

The ATM — short for "automated teller machine" — has been a part of our life since the mid-1960s. The first ATMs were strictly for getting cash. Today's machines do much more.

You can probably go to one of your bank's ATMs and make a deposit or loan payment, transfer funds between accounts, or inquire about your account balance.

You may use your ATM card to get money on a trip, even in a foreign country. That way you won't have to carry extra cash that can be lost or stolen. You can even go to some ATMs to buy postage stamps or add money to a pre-paid cell phone service.

ATM cards also may be used to make purchases at stores, with the payment automatically coming from your bank account.

While ATMs are very common and very beneficial, "a few people are hesitant about using ATMs and others just have a lot of questions or concerns, especially when they hear the occasional horror story," says Janet Kincaid, FDIC Senior Consumer Affairs Officer. She adds, though, that "the more people learn how ATMs can meet their needs, the more they can use ATMs to take away some of life's hassles."

That's why FDIC Consumer News has prepared this special report — a collection of tips and information to help you feel more comfortable using ATMs, enjoy the benefits, save on fees and protect against potential problems, including account errors and fraud. Just keep reading and we will tell you more about teller machines.

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Last Updated 06/02/2004 communications@fdic.gov