Number of compromised American ATMs soars - Fico

Number of compromised American ATMs soars - Fico

The number of cash machines in the US compromised by criminals rose 546% in 2015 over 2014, according to figures put together by analytic software firm Fico.

Fico, which monitors hundreds of thousands of American ATMs through its Card Alert service, says that the number compromised last year was the highest it has ever recorded.

Although the company has not provided raw numbers, it claims that non-bank machines are seeing the biggest spike in criminal activity, with 10 times as many compromised in 2015 compared to the previous year.

However, in better news, the average duration of compromises fell from 36 days in 2014 to 14 days in 2015, and the average number of cards affected by each one was cut in half.

TJ Horan, VP, fraud solutions, Fico, says: "Criminals are taking a quick-hit approach to ATM theft and card fraud. They are moving faster to make it harder for banks to react and shut down the compromises.

"They are targeting non-bank ATMs, which are more vulnerable — in 2015, non-bank ATMs accounted for 60 percent of all compromises, up from 39 percent in 2014."

Meanwhile, crooks in the British town of Caistor, Lincolnshire have taken a decidedly low-tech to ATM compromise, ripping a machine out of a wall with a forklift truck in the early hours of Friday morning.

The four masked thieves were forced to cut off part of the roof of their getaway van in order to fit the ATM inside, according to the BBC. The van was later found, on fire, on a nearby farm.

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