Bengaluru

Two foreigners held for stealing bank account details

They had fixed skimming devices in ATMs

The Tilak Nagar police have caught two member of a gang from Chile in South America for allegedly stealing bank account details of hundreds of customers by installing skimming machines in ATMs. They targeted kiosks that lacked adequate security measures, like guards.

The racket came to light a few days ago when cash replenishment staff discovered a skimming machine in the ATM of a public sector bank in Jayanagar. The staff alerted the police, who immediately posted men in plainclothes at the kiosk. The team caught Angelo Manuel Venegas Briones, 26, and Gonzalo Rafael Monje Valenzuela, 30, taking the skimming machine out of the ATM.

“We have seized their equipment and are are on the lookout for two of their associates who are on the run,” said the police. “By the time we finished questioning the duo and they led us to their residence, their accomplices had fled.”

Initial investigations revealed that the accused have fitted skimming machines and cameras in ATMs located within the limits of Cubbon Park and Ashok Nagar police stations.

“They came to India on visiting visas. They landed in New Delhi in May before heading to Bengaluru. Once they found a place to stay, they began hunting for ATMs where security was lax,” said a senior police officer.

They fixed skimming machines in the ATMs and placed a camera near the keypad used by customers to punch in their PIN. They retrieved the equipment at night, gather sensitive bank details and share the data with their contacts.

Angelo claimed to be a student and Gonzalo a mechanic.

According to senior officials, newer models of ATMs do not leave any scope for fixing a skimming device. “However, some banks continue to use older models in which such machines can be installed,” an official said.

In June, the manager of the bank’s branch at Amruthahalli had filed a complaint with the police after discovering a skimming device in an ATM. The manager had examined the ATM following several complaints from customers that money had been taken out of their accounts without their approval or knowledge.

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Printable version | Jun 6, 2020 7:11:58 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/bangalore/two-foreigners-held-for-stealing-bank-account-details/article28525088.ece

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