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When ATMs come under attack

Craig Lawrance VP Business Development (EMEA)




omni jun 21

Like me you probably haven’t seen many newspaper reports about ATM Cash-outs.  The one where a group of Human mules withdraw large amounts of money from a group of ATMs in a short period of time, using compromised card records to allow repeated and high withdrawal amounts.

It happened most notably in the middle east when a unknown payment processor on another continent had their systems hacked, card balances were increased, daily withdrawal limits were increased, and the mules set to work thousands of miles away while those in the faraway continent rested and slumbered.

“Whenever there is cash in close proximity to society,” said OmniPayments CEO Yash Kapadia, “there will always be determined elements that seek to defraud the system. The onus is on all financial institutions to secure their cash and to ensure all steps are taken to protect the applications from intrusion and compromise.”

It has also happened in several other places, although the banks concerned are very keen to keep quiet about it, as it’s rather embarrassing to admit, and not ideal for confidence.

The Payment card industry’s association PCI, well known for its PCI-DSS standards have issued a recent set of guidelines to encourage the banks to do all they can to prevent these cash-outs from happening again.  So far so good.  The challenge of course is that these attacks are initiated many miles away, and often unseen.

The Guidelines include all the recommendations you would expect including keeping all the systems updated with OS patches, doing regular penetration tests, but there are more things you can do.  OmniPayments users sleep easy in their beds at night as the application keeps a close eye on the behavior of the ATMs and can flag and prevent immediately any sudden surge of ATM Cash Withdrawals.

Your existing ATM estate switch may not be totally up to date when it comes to dealing with this sort of attack.  If you are seeking a higher level of security embedded within your ATM switch, take a closer look at OmniPayments.

The OmniPayments Fraud Blocker ensures that Cash-Outs can be nipped in the bud and stopped from causing massive financial loss to institutions around the world. Don’t leave your ATM estate open to a risk that can be easily mitigated.