KUALA LUMPUR – A total of RM530,600 was stolen from two automated teller machines (ATM) yesterday in what is believed to be a hacking incident using phone SIM card and sophisticated technology.
The hacking incident involving ATM in two Affin Bank branches in Johor and Selangor was the first case in the country after the cloning of ATM cards from 1997 to 2002.
Subang Jaya district police chief, ACP Yahya Ramli told Bernama the hacking incident was believed to be the work of an international syndicate from South America.
“The suspects withdrew money hundreds of times from two Affin Bank branches in one day. They stole the money without breaking the ATMs,” he added.
The case is investigated under Section 4 (1) of the Computer Crime Act 1997.
In the first incident at 9.48 am, the manager of Afffin Bank branch in Batu Pahat, Johor, found the ATM not functioning and that some money was missing.
Johor police said the information system recorded withdrawal of RM50 totalling 5,103 notes but there were only 27 notes in the ATM.
“Suspecting something amiss, the manager contacted the police and the investigation found no sign that the ATM was broken,” said sources.
Recording by CCTV cameras at the bank showed three suspects, believed to be from South America, making a series of withdrawals.
The suspects aged between 20 to 30 years withdrew a total of RM265,000.
Yahya said the same method was used a few hours later at Affin Bank branch in USJ Subang Jaya.
Two two male suspects, believed to be from South America, withdrew money from the ATM 137 times at 5.30 pm.
The police are trying to trace the suspects involved by studying recording by CCTV cameras at the bank premises.
Cloning of ATM cards occurred when ATM cards and credit cards were using the magnetic tape at the back of the cards.
The crime was eliminated after Bank Negara Malaysia enforced the chip and magnetic tape for all ATM cards and credit cards in 2003. – Bernama