ATM jackpotting

France Breaks Up ATM Jackpotting Network

According to French prosecutors an international network engaged in ATM jackpotting has been broken up by police (Source: AFP/SecurityWeek).

In a statement on Friday 15 May Paris prosecutor Remy Heitz said that two suspects (aged 26 and 31) and already known to the authorities, have been charged and placed in detention.  He said that, between May 10-12, several individuals from the “Russian-speaking community” suspected of belonging to an “international jackpotting organisation” were detained in Colombes outside Paris, Laval in western France and the southern city of Nice, while trying to damage an ATM.  The criminal group worked across Europe to insert malware into ATMs, attacking the machines at night. “A hacker, operating from abroad, would take control of the cash dispensing software,” the statement said.

Nineteen incidents across France have already come to light, with the financial damage estimated at €280,000.

“We have a new wave of ‘jackpotting’ in France,” Francois-Xavier Masson, head of France’s agency for combating crimes in information and communication technologies (OCLCTIC), told AFP, adding that more than 60 incidents have been identified since the end of 2019.  “There was a previous wave in 2018 and then it came to a halt, before resuming at the end of 2019. The way the groups act is changing, the teams are more international. But we are also changing how we act”, he added.

ATM jackpotting has become a recognised problem across the world in recent years.  This is done by either using malware, or by using an unauthorised device (known as a black box), to ‘jackpot’ or  ‘cash-out’ an ATM. Typically all the cash in the machine is illegally ejected in such attacks, and collected by the criminals at the scene.  The EAST Expert Group on All Terminal Fraud (EGAF) focuses on the prevention of malware and black box attacks and, since 2016, has produced 48 malware and black box related Fraud Alerts from 24 countries, which are available to EAST Members.

EAST EGAF has also produced standard definitions for both methods, which can be seen in the below images (for a full list of all Terminal Fraud Definitions and related criminal benefits see the Terminal Fraud Definitions page on this website). 



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