Abbey National has joined the growing ranks of UK banks to cut cash machine withdrawal limits in response to rising ATM fraud.
Abbey is cutting the daily limit for cash withdrawals at its network of machines from £500 to £300, in a move that follows recent restrictions set by Barclays.
Both banks cite rising fraud and customer protection as the reason behind the measure. Recently online bank First Direct wrote to customers advising them to limit their use of cash machines to just once a week and to withdraw enough money to last.
According to figures from industry payments body Apacs, cash machine fraud increased from £29.1 million in 2002 to £39 million in 2003.
Last month Barclays introduced a new warning screen on all its ATMs which gives advice on what to do if the machine looks like it has been tampered with. Similar warning messages were first aired by Royal Bank of Scotland in April.
Barclays has also outlined ambitions to be the first in the UK to introduce a new industry standard "shield your PIN icon" on its ATM screens. This icon reminds all consumers of best practice when entering their PIN details in order to protect against shoulder-surfing criminals.