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Turn Your Debit Card into an ATM-Only Card

Ken Tumin
Ken Tumin   |     |   5,947 posts since 2009

If you only want an ATM card but your bank only provides a debit card, you may be able to have your bank disable the debit card function. Then the card will only function as an ATM card that only works at ATMs when you use your PIN. If you or someone else (such as a thief) tries to buy things with it, the merchant will see zero funds and the purchase would be denied. Clark Howard has more details about this.

51hh   |     |   1,716 posts since 2010
That is a known (FWF) method long time ago (thanks Clark, but no thanks).  It is YMMV as well.  Some banks refuse to reduce eith the ATM or the POS debit limit.  Some allows reduction to lower limit, say $300.  Some banks are more flexible.  Most importantly, one should not reduce debit limit to zero for Reward Checking Accounts for obvious reasons (10-12 debit transactions are needed every month). 

The routine is to find out the bank policy and write an autherization letter for such reductions.