ATM card scam gang gaoled

ATM card scam gang gaoled

Three Eastern European men have been gaoled for attempting to steal money from UK bank accounts after their ATM card skimming device was discovered by a police officer.

According to local press reports, Aristom Kandratski, Aleksei Shyniauski and Vitautus Anickas, who are all from countries within the former Soviet Union, had set up a scanning device at a Barclays ATM in Reading.

The gang had intended to skim cards and record customers' PIN numbers, but in this case the card reader failed to work and no financial details were ever recorded.

The three were caught by an off-duty police officer who discovered the skimming device. The gang tried to get away in a car but were arrested shortly afterwards.

Reading Crown Court heard that in the car was a metal moulding, a mini camera, a map of Reading, number plate fixers, a roll of tape and a 'Do Not Use' and 'Out of Order' sign which were likely to be fitted to other ATMs to divert users to the compromised machine.

All three pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud. Kandratski, who is from Belarus, was given an 18 month sentence, Shyniauski, also from Belarus received, a 12 month sentence and Anickas, who is from Lithuania, was sentenced to nine months.

Barclays said in December that it was rolling out an anti-skimming device across a further 188 ATMs following trials of the system at 100 cash machines.

The bank said the new device virtually eradicated ATM fraud for other European banks using the system. The device fits over the card slot on an ATM and prevents a fake reader being attached. The machine automatically shuts down if it detects anything suspicious.

The UK bank said it would roll out the devices across its entire ATM network during this year if the extended trial was successful.

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