Police had cautioned banks on stepping up security two months ago

The State-Level Bankers’ Committee (SLBC) has told all banks that “the casual attitude towards security guards employed at ATMs without training, weapons, and physical fitness is a serious breach” and has instructed heads of banks to assess the security steps at all ATMs in the State, particularly in Bangalore.

The 125th SLBC meeting, chaired by Sudhir Kumar Jain, chairman and managing director, SyndicateBank, instructed bank managements to assess the security measures provided at ATMs on a case-to-case basis and take necessary steps to safeguard kiosks in the city. In fact, a few months ago, the police officers of the State had suggested that banks take up extra security measures in the unsafe zones.

The banks have been told to deploy security guards 24x7 or at least at night at all ATMs.

The SLBC meeting, which was held on September 30, 2013, had asked banks to install pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) camera (360 degrees angle) for capturing all activities outside and inside the ATMs at any given point of time. Compliance with the Private Security Agencies Regulation Act 2005 was made mandatory for deploying security and installing cameras.

In August

Following a spate of robberies at ATMs in the city, the State police, led by Director-General and Inspector-General of Police L.R. Pachau and City Police Commissioner Raghavendra H. Auradkar held a meeting with bankers on August 20, 2013, and discussed various steps to be taken by bankers to ensue safety of their customers and the cash.

However, the banks told “the police officials not to ask them to shut down the ATMs when there is a guard facility, and not to lock the ATMs without informing the banks”.

The SLBC meeting discussed steps taken by banks while transacting cash from banks to ATM kiosks and deployment of security at kiosks.

The bankers urged the government to explore the possibility of increasing police beat at night.

Consulting the police

The SLBC said the Police Department would be consulted while finalising the location of ATMs in a particular area. The Station House Officer of the local police station can be consulted on the issue, it said.

The banks follow RBI guidelines and open ATMs in remote areas. Banks do not recover much cost from ATM transactions and the service charges are regulated by the RBI.

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