BSIA and Cardtronics urge determined legal action over spike in attacks on ATMs

The British Security Industry Association (BSIA) has welcomed a recently published report on the damage realised by attacks on cash machines and is calling for on the judiciary to hand down harsher sentences as a deterrent. According to ATM operator Cardtronics, rural areas are especially at risk. Attacks can leave those living in remote areas struggling to access cash from elsewhere while machines are being repaired or replaced.

The report, entitled ‘Victimless Crime: The True Impact of ATM Crime on UK Communities’outlines that while less than a third (31%) of ATM attacks were carried out in rural areas in 2013, this number has risen to more than two-fifths (42%) in 2018. Over 40% of attacks in the first half of this year were carried out in areas where there was a maximum of one bank branch open for customers.

Cardtronics said the frequency of ATM attacks generally has surged from 400 in 2014 to 722 in 2017. The report also predicts that the number of attacks could more than triple between 2016 and 2025.

Sarah Staff, head of SaferCash on behalf of the BSIA, said: “Our members have seen a real spike in the level of ATM crime in the past few years, with a 60% increase in these types of offences nationwide in the last three months alone. They are also increasingly being carried out by organised crime gangs targeting local rural communities. The impact of these crimes is far reaching, not only due to the actual theft and the loss of revenue to businesses, but also in terms of the extensive damage caused to buildings and the real impact such crime has on members of the community.”

Staff continued: “UK law enforcement and the private security industry are working hard to prevent these crimes and apprehend those involved. Through SaferCash, the BSIA is now calling on the judiciary to hand down harsher sentences as a deterrent to those individuals intent of committing these offences. The length of the sentences should truly reflect the seriousness of these crimes and the impact that they have on each local community. We’re also working with the private security industry, including ATM manufacturers, suppliers and installers, to further strengthen the collaborative work conducted with local police forces.”

In conclusion, Staff observed: “The BSIA also appeals to the public to assist where and when they can by reporting any suspicious incidents or information to the plice or anonymously to Crimestoppers. The public can often be the eyes and ears of their local areas. They can help towards tackling this crime trend which is negatively impacting their communities with a loss of local conveniences and their rightful access to cash.”

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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