28 March 2015

Man arrested over $1.5m New York ATM skimming scam

09 January 2012  |  6229 views  |  1 digital fingerprints

A Romanian man has been arrested in New York, accused of being part of a gang that installed skimming devices on more than 40 HSBC ATMs before stealing at least $1.5 million from customer accounts.

Authorities say that between last May and his arrest last year, Laurentiu Iulian Bulat was part of a fraud ring installing compromised card readers and pin-hole cameras at HSBC branch ATMs in Manhattan, Long Island, and Westchester.

Once gang members had retrieved the skimming devices, they used the information to create counterfeit cards and withdrew more than $1.5 million using the PINs captured by the pin-hole cameras.

Bulat was arrested last week after HSBC bank video surveillance caught him tampering with two ATMs at a Manhattan branch. US Secret Service agents were called in and arrested the Romanian when he returned later that day holding a flathead screwdriver, which agents say is typically used to place and remove the skimming devices.

Bulat, who is in the US illegally after overstayed his visa, faces up to 60 years in jail on one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and one of bank fraud.

Manhattan US Attorney Preet Bharara says: "ATM skimmers are high tech bank robbers. Instead of using a gun and a note, skimmers use fake card readers and hidden cameras to steal a customer's information to get to that customer's money and take it. Often it happens completely undetected."

Comments: (1)

David Griffiths - gryffle - Hertford | 09 January, 2012, 16:24

Nonsense: ATM skimmers are actually very very low tech bank robbers.  

1 thumb up! 1 thumb up! (Log in to thumb up)
Comment on this story (membership required)
Log in to receive notifications when someone posts a comment

Finextra news in your inbox

For Finextra's free daily newsletter, breaking news flashes and weekly jobs board, sign up now.

Related blogs

Create a blog about this story (membership required)

Related stories

23 September, 2011
05 September, 2011
10 June, 2011
13 January, 2011
04 June, 2010
18 November, 2009
13 May, 2009

Related company news


Who is commenting?

Top topics

Most viewed Most shared
Banking has reached a digital tipping poin...
9555 views comments | 53 tweets | 30 linkedin
Europe sets the pace as fintech investment...
5028 views comments | 27 tweets | 19 linkedin
Google preps Gmail bill payment feature
4497 views comments | 13 tweets | 12 linkedin
Barclays and PayPal join Government ID acc...
4307 views comments | 10 tweets | 11 linkedin
Credit Suisse paper offers qualified bitco...
4074 views comments | 5 tweets | 9 linkedin

Featured job

Competitive base, double OTE
London, UK

Find your next job