The US Secret Service is warning financial institutions that ATMs are being targeted by hackers, who are using tools to empty the machines of cash.
Dubbed ‘jackpotting,’ the trend is one that has been fairly common in Europe and other parts of the world. It is only now that authorities are seeing it crop up in the United States, sweeping from the Gulf Coast to New England.
Reuters reports there have been about a half dozen successful attempts to empty ATMs. “A coordinated group of hackers likely tied to international criminal syndicates has pilfered more than $1 million by hijacking ATM machines across the United States and forcing them to spit out bills like slot machines dispensing a jackpot, a senior U.S. Secret Service official said on Monday.”
Referencing a recent Krebs on Security report, The Verge writes, “The thieves have been posing as ATM technicians and, using a medical endoscope, locate an area within the machine where they can attach their own computers.” From there, the cyber thieves replace the ATM’s original hard disk with a malware-laden disk that mirrors the ATM’s own software. To customers, the cash machine appears to be out of service. Meanwhile, the hackers remotely force it to dispense cash, with hired hands who collect the ‘jackpot.’
Read the full story at The Verge.