Greater Lawrence Community Action Council, Inc

DTA Requiring New PINs for Cardholders

Wednesday, Nov 9, 2022

The Mass. Department of Transitional Assistance has announced it will be requiring cardholders who receive SNAP benefits in the Lawrence area to set a new PIN (personal identification number) to use their EBT card.  The following information was provided by DTA.

What is happening?DTA Skimming Scam Flyer

To protect DTA clients and their benefits from known skimming scams, DTA will be requiring cardholders who receive SNAP benefits in certain cities and towns to set a new PIN to use their EBT card if they have not received a new card or changed their PIN recently. DTA will be notifying cardholders before this occurs, including through dedicated outreach to residents with disabilities, older adults, immigrants, and survivors of domestic violence. Cardholders can change their PIN through automated steps by calling the number on the back of their card. If anyone has trouble changing their PIN, DTA is available to help.

DTA’s Lawrence local office will be opened Saturday, November 19 from 9am to 1pm for clients who need help pinning their card.

Why is this happening?DTA Skimming Scam Flyer Sp

DTA clients have been the target of benefit theft through skimming. Skimming is a type of theft where thieves put a device on a store’s card-swiping machine to copy card information. This information is used to make fake EBT cards. These are then used to steal money or SNAP from real accounts. Skimming can happen anywhere someone swipes an EBT card.

What has already been done?

This was first identified in April 2022 for cash benefits and June 2022 for SNAP benefits. DTA has taken multiple proactive steps to notify clients of these scams and ways to protect their benefits, including: reminding them to change their PIN via text messages, adding an alert on the agency’s mobile app DTA Connect, updating the message on the DTA Assistance Line, inserting flyers in regular DTA mailings and providing flyers in DTA local offices, sending out notices, creating multilingual outreach materials, a dedicated webpage ( /, and sending out a media advisory.

Despite DTA’s outreach efforts, many DTA clients have still not recently changed their PINs, making them vulnerable to skimming schemes. This is why DTA will be requiring clients in locations with a current high incidence of skimming to change their PINs.
How to Change Your PINHow to Change Your Pin Part 2