Whether it’s a steel door or an encrypted network, thieves are always finding ways to break down the barriers that protect money. And the new technologies are also enabling bank robbers to invent new ways to jack cash with flair and razzle dazzle. Exhibit A, a security researcher at the Black Hat conference in Las Vegas demonstrates on-stage how one can remotely hack an ATM to make it spew money while playing a lively tune. [More]
Wells Fargo is the undisputed leader in Antarctic banking thanks to a pair of ATMs at McMurdo station. Despite the monopoly, the bank acts as a benevolent despot by allowing non-customers to draw cash without a surcharge. But who replenishes the stock of $20s? What happens when the ATMs break? Wells Fargo VP David Parker explained it all in a recent interview. [More]
Following an L.A. Times report that revealed the California welfare debit card program allows benefits recipients to withdraw cash at ATMs at casinos, state officials disclosed that over $1.8 million in taxpayer cash had been withdrawn on the gaming floors of casinos in just the last eight months. [More]
Next time you’re in Abu Dhabi and have to get some gold in a hurry (and we’ve all been in that situation, right?), you can just drop in to the Emirates Palace hotel, pop a few bills into the ATM and walk out with gold bars. The machine, Gold To Go, monitors gold prices and automatically updates its pricing every 10 minutes. [More]
A former BoA IT worker has agreed to plead guilty to installing malware on the bank’s ATM machines in order to withdraw money whenever he felt like it, reports Wired. According to the plea agreement, his total take from the crime was between $200-400k. The bank won’t disclose how he did it or what the malware was like, but earlier this month Visa announced that new malware has hit the U.S. that could not only capture customers’ PINs and card data, but also give the criminal the ability to empty the machine of any cash that was in it. [More]
Police in East Peoria, Illinois say that an unidentified man used a stolen pickup truck to smash through the door and front window of a gas station and dislodge an ATM from the wall it was bolted to. He then hauled the machine to a parking lot where he attempted to withdraw cash by backing the truck into the ATM. He was not successful, and may have stolen another vehicle to leave the area. [More]
Would you have noticed this ATM skimmer, spotted on a Citibank ATM in California? The actual card slot is on the left. The skimmer is on the right. The contraption is seemingly custom-designed for this model ATM, and includes a pinhole camera for capturing victims’ PINs. Fancy. [More]
The Real Hustle shows two methods fraudsters can use to jack your ATM card and PIN. The first is the skimming method most of us are familiar with. The second is a lo-tech distraction-based method that, while interesting, seems a little higher risk than most card thieves are willing to put up with. [More]
Even if you always look for skimmers and hidden cameras when you use an ATM, you still might be a victim of identity theft if the ATM is later sold on eBay or Craigslist. [More]
So you’ve fought the mighty rebaterus and won, prying your hard-won mail-in rebate money from its claws. If your rebate isn’t in the form of a prepaid debit card, it’s probably a postcard-sized check—cheap to mail, simple, easy. For the rebate fulfillment company. For the consumer depositing checks via ATM as banks cut back on their hours, it’s not so simple or easy.
Every Ponzi scheme has to have a gimmick; something to convince marks that they’re investing in a legitimate enterprise, even when they’re being bilked of every last cent. For Bernie Madoff, it was an investment fund that offered ridiculously steady returns. For Vance Moore II and Walter Netschi it was ATMs, an incredibly prosaic setup that managed to siphon $80 million from investors who believed they were putting their money into cash machines. The only cash machine, of course, was the fund itself, which Moore and Netschi allegedly operated from 2005 to 2008.
LiveLeak has posted surveillance video footage from earlier this month of a guy in Brazil installing a skimming device onto a bank ATM. The second half of the tape shows him being arrested and officials revealing the device, which just reminds us that the next time we use an ATM, we’re first going to take off a shoe and hit everything on it like it’s covered in giant ants. See the video below.
How are you spending the long weekend? If you’re one of 2,000 Arizona Federal Credit Union customers affected in a Visa security breach, we hope you weren’t planning a trip out of state.
Last week, a customer in Long Beach, New York, discovered a skimmer attached to the outside of a local ATM branch instead of on specific machines. We’ve talked a lot about being wary of any suspicious add-ons at the ATM, but in this case the criminals were collecting card info as people swiped to enter the building—although they still had pinhole cameras set up to record PINs next to each keypad.
Is this boa constrictor discovered on top of an ATM in Serbia part of an attempt to control the scourge of mice nesting in ATMs, or just the latest international crime syndicate to take up ATM skimming?
Reader Kellie reports being the victim of an ATM skimming scam in the Chicago area. Mostly, she was amazed that the thefts weren’t reported in the local media, and she asked bank employees why. Here’s what they told her.