SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Do ATMs have the ability to alert police if you’re being robbed just by you entering your PIN number backward?

According to KHOU-TV in Houston, a viewer posed the question to them after seeing an image post on Facebook claiming the little-known feature was true.

The image shows an apparent attack at an ATM. The attacker appears to be hitting the victim while taking something from the victim. Beneath the image is this caption:

“If a theif [sic] forces you to take money out of the ATM, do not argue or resist. What you do is punch in your pin # backwards. EX: if its 1234, you’ll type 4321. When you do that, the money will come out, but will be stuck in the slot. The machine will immediately alert the local police without the robbers knowledge & begin taking photos of the suspect. Every ATM has the feature. Stay safe.”

KHOU verified that this is a hoax that apparently started in 2006.

A 2009 report by the Federal Trade Commission into technologies that could actually prevent ATM robberies concluded that, despite being very expensive, such technology wouldn’t deter crime — it could actually put the victims in more danger.

Click here to read the full report.