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How is ATM hacked and how to protect your funds?

How to hack an ATM machine: attack methods and consequences

October 20, 2020

How to hack an ATM machine: attack methods and consequences

The most common cases of ATM fraud are considered: methods of attacks on ATMs in order to steal funds, as well as ways to protect them from hacking.

Hacking or infecting ATMs is a common activity of fraudsters who try to illegally seize the money hidden inside. Depending on the method of targeting, scammers can act remotely or not. In the first case, an attack is carried out on the ATM network, in the second, directly on a specific point. Such an impact negatively affects the work of the entire banking structure.

What are the options for hacking ATMs

Different options can be used depending on the method of exposure. Most often, the processing center is replaced by a special server to which each ATM is connected via a cable, it is responsible for all operations. When attacking a server, attackers are able to issue false commands, thereby deceiving funds. At the same time, it is enough to simply use any credit card.

Attempts to hack with the help of special devices are no less common. It is enough just to use a special key that provides direct access to the inside of the ATM. Such a key can be obtained by theft or from unscrupulous bank employees or collectors. As soon as the case is opened, the machine dispenses all the cash that is currently available inside the ATM.

Hacking attempts with virus programs can also be used. It is enough just to get access to the USB-input and the fraudster will connect the USB flash drive with the malware. Such programs are aimed at performing erroneous actions, including the uncontrolled disbursement of cash.

A common attempt to break into an ATM case is more commonly used. Explosive devices, drills, and more can be used to access the safe that holds funds.

Possible causes and sources of threat

The scammers can cover both large banks and small structures with a couple of branches in the country. But more often than not, ATMs belonging to small banks are hacked, since the company has almost no funds to ensure the required level of security. At least often, a hacking attempt occurs as a result of the negligence of the employees themselves.

Therefore, it is so important to take the necessary measures that could protect banks:

  • installation of video surveillance cameras;
  • providing authentication between the control program and the ATM; correct network segmentation;
  • conducting educational activities with employees;
  • use of reliable software.

Otherwise, the bank risks losing not only cash, but also the confidence of depositors who simply terminate the contract with a particular company.