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The Green Sheet Online Edition

August 13, 2018 • Issue 18:08:01

Readers Speak: Keeping ATMs secure

ATM crimes are on the rise in the United States, especially since many ATM deployers have yet to upgrade their terminals to EMV, and debit cards issued here still include mag stripes, which are easy to duplicate. Wise placement of ATMs enhances security, and knowledgeable technicians can spot tampering and malicious hardware. Here are further tips to improve ATM security:

  • Physical barriers: Concrete pylons or bollards create a physical barricade around ATMs, which helps prevent smash-and-grab attacks. Other deterrents include ATM body armor that surrounds the terminal in steel plating, and anchor kits. Bolting ATMs to the ground provides an extra security layer, as most anchor kits can withstand high impacts.
  • Physical security: Many attacks happen at the ATM's top cabinet. Upgrading locks and managing key access is a sound method of preventing unauthorized entry to the terminal, which houses the main board and dispenser connections. Alarms installed at ATM access points will notify site staff when a terminal is breached, adding another layer of security. Security management software with remote diagnosis or other monitoring solutions facilitate management and monitoring of terminals in real time.
  • Up-to-date software: Slow EMV migration has left U.S. ATMs susceptible to cyberattacks. Installing software updates and security patches in a timely manner is vital to protecting operating systems from unauthorized downloads of malware and skimming software. Regularly updating passwords and monitoring all who have access to ATMs adds another layer of security.
  • Video cameras: Surveillance cameras deter crime and help protect the ATM deployers and customers. On-site video cameras can monitor the ATM and surrounding area or the terminal itself. Even when thieves wear hats, sunglasses, etc., those items can act as identifiers.

To learn more about potential threats and solutions available to protect ATMs, download the new white paper, Improving ATM Security, at www.mvpatm.com.

Mark D. Smith, MVP Financial Equipment


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