A good CCTV surveillance system, access control, and intruder alarm system are still the basic, but important systems used to protect the bank premises. In the past, CCTV cameras were expensive and the captured image quality was poor, showing only vague grainy silhouettes of criminals as evidence that was inadmissible in court. Nevertheless, with our technology getting smarter—for instance, development of wide dynamic range (WDR)—CCTV cameras have become a necessity as they are now capable of dynamic functions which include central managing system, face recognition as well as clearly capturing individual car number plates.
Unlike old-fashioned security cameras installed outside ATMs to record around the clock, cameras with vandal resistant housing can reduce the risk of damage from vandalism or inclement weather. Vandal-proof dome cameras generally have a solid metal base and vandal resistant poly-carbonate plastic cover. These cameras are typically used in areas that may be prone to vandalism or tampering. Once these cameras are properly installed, they are very difficult to be tampered with because they are completely enclosed and typically require a special tool that is included to open the dome cover
Additionally, banks could also leverage on these equipment for quality management and customer service. The counter lines can be clearly monitored from the CMS room. In that case, bank personnel can quickly receive instruction to open more lines when it gets crowded—improving employee productivity and customer’s experience.
In addition, intruder alarm can be integrated with CCTV systems to bring up relevant images and trigger audio features for surveillance verification. Banks and financial institutions should also tap into the benefits of using networking systems to provide swift remote access to the system as and when required.
Access Control System
As a minimum required security standard, an access control system must be installed. The system should allow for programming of multiple cardholders. The system must also be able to provide transaction records on all access controlled door. When considering access control on a particular door, pedestrian traffic flow through the door and security will dictate the need. Doors which experience high traffic flows usually lead to low risk areas, while high risk areas should have limited access. High risk areas should be accessed on “a need to go principle”.
Banking institutions must conduct regular security risk assessments and surveys to help them determine their levels of exposures and vulnerabilities. Each bank must identify as part of their risk analysis the areas, which should have limited access in their banking institution.
The following areas should be considered: The computer network room, doors leading to the vaults, doors in the cash delivery area, treasury offices and doors leading to the administration area from the Banking Hall.
Major Threat: ATM Heist
In wake of the brazen $45 million global ATM heist occurred in early 2013, the event accentuated the vulnerability of financial institutions around the world to clever criminals working to stay a step ahead of the latest technologies designed to thwart them. However, eight members of the ring were arrested at least partly through old fashioned, but reliable surveillance systems. The investigators compared images captured by the CCTV cameras at multiple ATM outlets with the suspects’ driver’s license photos and Facebook pages where they posted snapshots of themselves with wads of cash.
In fact, robbing from ATM or the ATM itself have been particularly prevalent in the recent years as compared to bank robberies with masks and weapons involved.
CCTV Cameras for ATM Outlets
- Obvious camera set up on top of the ATM.
- Hidden Camera installed Inside the ATM.
For ATM machines it is best to use two kinds of cameras. The first camera should be an obvious camera that is set up on top or very close to the ATM machine. The second camera would be a hidden camera installed inside the ATM machine itself to allow it to capture the facial features of the customer. Those two cameras serve different but complementary purposes. To start with, the obvious camera can greatly assist in deterring away any type of crime or suspicious activity near the ATM machine. On top of that, it would help the viewer to conceive what is happening around the ATM machine and will present the bigger picture in a better view compared to the small hidden camera. On the other hand, the hidden camera will do a great job at identifying potential hackers and thieves who try to break into the machine or try to force others into giving them their money using the ATM machine. Even though those two cameras do different things, their combined footage tell a more complete story and tend to make police investigations go a lot smoother.