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Home DFR Observations & Comment ATM Fraud & Security Digest - October 2010
ATM Fraud & Security Digest - October 2010 E-mail
Written by Douglas Russell   
Friday, 05 November 2010 14:46

ATM Skimming / Skimming / EFTPOS Compromise

Incidents of ATM skimming continued to dominate ATM fraud reports from many regions during October and, in particular, the US, Europe, Canada and Indonesia. Statistics released by the European ATM Security Team for the first six months of 2010 indicate an increase of ATM skimming in Europe of 24%, although losses decreased by 8%. While many countries and states have taken action to improve criminal law and legislation, making possession of skimming devices a specific crime, there are still examples of weaknesses. A foreign criminal, imprisoned in Norway after being found in possession of an ATM skimming device while entering the country, was released after a legal loophole emerged which meant that authorities should have had to prove the ATM skimming equipment was either purchased or used within Norway.

Card Trapping / Card Theft / Distraction / Card Swapping

Card trapping, including Lebanese Loops, continued to be reported in October, particularly in the UK. Distraction techniques used to obtain cards mainly involved the ‘dropped note' method. Police in Saudi Arabia warned that perpetrators were pretending to be helpful (helpful stranger) in order to distract victims and swap their cards after shoulder surfing the PIN.

System Compromise /Transaction Reversal Fraud / Denomination Fraud

Transaction Reversal Fraud was suspected in the UK. ATM Malware (virus) was reported in Vietnam.

Deposit Fraud / Fake Deposit / False Deposit / Cheque Fraud          

Deposit fraud in the US included fake cheques and empty deposit envelopes. Arrests in the US included a ‘ring leader' who opened new accounts, made fake deposits and withdrew funds prior to them being properly cleared.

Phishing / Vishing / Advanced Fee / Funds Transfer Fraud

Phishing, vishing and smishing continued on a daily basis globally. In some instances, victims who hoped that text message alerts linked to their account would warn them should any unauthorized withdrawals or funds transfers be made, were disappointed to learn that the perpetrators had been able to deactivate the alert service or have the cellular provider block their SIM card.

Ram Raid Attacks / Theft of ATM / Smash-and-Grab

In the UK, a gang of four, who failed to remove an ATM using a digger, were sentenced to a total of 14 years prison. A total of three vehicles, including the digger, a 4x4 vehicle and a flat-bed lorry, were stolen in the days preceding the raid. An alarm activated as they attacked the ATM. In India, the wife of a watchman, who was covering for her husband's absence, prevented a gang from stealing an ATM. In the US, incidents of tow straps and chains breaking were reported, along with many successful thefts using a variety of vehicles from pickup trucks to forklifts.

Safe Cutting / Safe Breaking / Theft from ATM

Tools used in October included crowbars and electric grinders in the US. In one failed attempt, a former police officer was sentenced for attempting to use a grinder to open an ATM. The fire alarm activated during the attempt. In the UK, a gang which used drills, grinders and crowbars was found guilty. Linked to a larger group, it is estimated they were responsible for thefts amounting to at least £500,000.

Explosive Attacks

ATM bombings in South Africa included an incident where employees of a local business were held hostage and forced to remove the SIM cards from their phones while a gang blew open an ATM with explosives.

Quick Search Strings:

Theft of ATMs >                                         Failed Theft of ATMs >

Theft From ATMs >                                   ATM Skimming >

Card Trapping >                                         Leaving Transaction Live >

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The above digest is provided by DFR Risk Management, who provide consultancy services advising ATM and self-service terminal deployers and manufacturers, as well as law-enforcement agencies, on how to manage ATM and self-service terminal fraud and security threats.

 

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