atmpin   How Safe Is Your PIN? [INFOGRAPHIC] Ah, the trusty PIN number, the 4 digits that separates you from your money. We use our bank PIN number in a wide variety of situations, whether it’s taking money out of the ATM machine or paying with our card in a shop. But you would be amazed (or perhaps not) at the stupidity of some people when it comes to the 4 digits they need to keep secret the most. For it seems that a lot of people seem to have this irresistible urge to tell everyone their number or make it extremely easy to figure out. Then they probably wonder where their money disappeared to.

For example, the most preferred number is 1234. Now if I was a devious thief wanting to relieve you of your cash, that would be the first PIN I would try. But the hits just keep on rolling. The next preferred number is 1111 followed by 0000. Or perhaps you might have your birth year as your PIN? Or better yet, the fiendishly clever plan of disguising it as the last 4 digits of a fake phone number in your wallet? Whatever happened to getting 4 non-random digits and memorising them?

Let us know how seriously (or not) you take your PIN number? Do you resort to one of the easy methods outlined below in our infographic, or do you have a complex PIN that no-one will get, and which would make peoples heads explode if they tried to figure it out?  Maybe you work in a bank and you have some hilarious PIN-related stories to share?

How Safe Is Your PIN 800   How Safe Is Your PIN? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Infographic Source:

Image Credit: ATM Machine Keypad Numbers via

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Vipul Jain

I just love Infographics!! :thumbsup:

Sushil Kathpalia

Well in this post , you leaked many info about PIN or may your PIN as well :p

Mark O’Neill

No, my PIN number is not one of the easy ones. Mine is one assigned to me by my bank and I memorised it.

Juan Carlos Espinosa Agudelo

*brofist* we’re part of the 77%! :D

(now everyone who’s reading knows we’re either bluffing or they have the ‘advantage’ of knowing that our PIN isn’t one of the mentioned ones :P)

Mihovil Pletikos

great help for amateur thieves :)

Mark O’Neill

Not really. If people don’t have one of the easy numbers, then they have nothing to worry about. On the other hand, if they choose to have a PIN of 1234, then they deserve to get hacked, quite frankly.

Alex Perkins

Some people I know make their PIN add up to a certain number. Is that secure?

Mark O’Neill

The only secure PIN is one where the numbers are not in any kind of sequence. If the numbers are truly random, then it is much safer.

Bumferry Hogart

Very good. nobody will ever my PIN number because its 4991…. joking!

Juan Carlos Espinosa Agudelo

1994 in reverse?

Robert Soar

Pet hate – “Pin nimber” – Personal Identification Number number!


Me too!

Rhonda Callow

Great infographic!

Arron Walker

I know pin number is redundant, but I can’t help saying it anyway. Still, sharing this around – very useful.

Mark O’Neill

Why is it redundant? What could replace it to protect your money? I think we’re an awful long way off from palm prints and iris scanners.

Arron Walker

I mean saying pin number, because you’re saying number twice, personal identification number number. That’s what I mean; I know I’m saying an idiot thing, but I just automatically attach the word number at the end of pin when I speak.

Mark O’Neill

Actually you make a pretty good point. That’s not stupid at all.


Very cool!

Joel Lee

I just memorize my PIN codes through muscle memory. If I have to enter them using a normal keyboard, I have to type on an invisible keypad to remember them… Lol.

Muhammad Ahmad

and how about this one. I have heard that when some one try to rob you at atm, you can enter your pin but in reverse order and an alarm machine starts ringing to alert security. is this right?


No this is not true. How would it tell if your PIN was reversed, if your PIN was something like 1221 or 4444?

Mark O’Neill

LOL. I have no idea as I have never worked for a bank. Neither have I been robbed at an ATM (knocking on wood).

But Rob makes a good point. So I guess that means there is no alarm. There’s always shouting for help at the top of your lungs though. That’s a pretty good alarm :-)


You’ll risk losing your life doing that.

Edwin Williams

One of the best infographics! It really simplifies everything!

Adrian Rea

I personally would have preferred a 6 digit number but that’s just me. perhaps the next infographic could show the different levels of encryption various companies use to the point that some banks use no encryption at all with data sent over phone lines, yet many credit cards use very high encryption. Also there is the fact that if you have a card you think has been duplicated and the pin copied, never destroy it or cut through it, especially the magnetic strip or the chip EVEN IF THE BANK TELLS YOU TO after a fraud notification. The card holds data on when the real card was used and if someone else has copied your card and seen your pin, then you can prove that your actual card was not used fraudulently. Cut it up and the band can claim you spent the money yourself or did not keep your PIN secure enough.

Mark O’Neill

That’s interesting. Where did you hear that?

Stephanie w

This is useful information. This infograph was a little hard to read though.

Greg Frye

Great infographic, has promoted some interesting comments.

Mac Witty

”The best type of PIN to have is something that isn’t memorable in any way”
1. how can a sequence of 4 digits not be memorable?
2. How can anything not memorable be used?

Mark O’Neill

What I meant was don’t choose something which is memorable to a potential thief. If your birth year is 1970 (for example), choosing 1970 as your PIN is stupid because that is the first thing they will try. In that respect, it is memorable.

But obviously choose something which you will be able to memorise in your head. Writing it down is the last thing you should do. The one place a thief can’t access your PIN is in your head (unless they have invented some kind of revolutionary mind reading machine, in which case we’re all in deep doo-doo!!)

Yash Desai

banks should have pattern unlocks


that’s the same thing as choosing a number. i like to imagine the keypad as a pattern grid, which is why i usually don’t include a 0 in my pin.

ion popa

Followed Mikko Hypponen’s advice ( ); good idea or not?

kesting nesting

in my country the bank assigns an unmodifiable PIN.
since they hold your money, i guess you trust them to set it.
why would a bank allow people to choose their own PINs ? (kind of dumb)

Tim Brookes

Because then you can change it when you want (more secure), or to a number you’ll actually remember (save you calling the bank all the time).

Your email provider lets you change your password whenever you want, and your email is your life – your identity, access to your bank, your online services, shopping sites; it’s arguably more important than your bank account. Would you say that was kind of dumb too?

Maulya Agustini

Only have debit card and confused password! And even I’m the one who made the password sometimes forgot… :P


my pin is 6-digit and not a reference to any part of my life (the number simply popped out of my head), and i still memorised it.

Raghav Gupta

no one can guess my pin :P

Douglas Mutay

What will happen if someone from my bank is actually a hacker and check those pin? Feel insecured…

Diane @InEx Finance

That’s a cool infographic. I would have never thought that so many people still use the 1234 combination for ther PINs