An increase in illegal ATM software

29 July 2009

In spite of reports regarding more frequent hacking of ATM software, banks and financial institutions of some countries not only do not invest in ensuring safety, but tend to install illegal and non-secured software, which increases security risk even more. Such tendencies were noticed by the specialists of BS/2 Company, which develops software and provides outsourcing services.

“We constantly communicate with customers and partners from different countries. If a year ago we used to receive few reports of using illegal software, today we receive such information ten times as often,” said Vladas Lapinskas, Executive Director of BS/2.

According to Mr. Lapinskas, illegal software is most often found in some countries of Africa and Asia, less frequently in Central and Eastern Europe. The specialist estimates that such tendencies were determined by the financial crisis that covered the entire world.

“Attempting to save on certified software meeting the strictest safety requirements, banks and financial institutions risk much bigger expenses, which would be necessary to restore the reputation if customers’ data was stolen,” stated Mr. Lapinskas.

He confirmed that there were cases of illegal usage of software developed by BS/2. “When such facts are revealed, we offer to legalise and certify our software. Moreover, we are currently offering big discounts,” said the Head of BS/2. Many companies using illegal software apply to us to obtain software.

According to the data of non-governmental organisation EAST (European ATM Security Team), in 2008, the number of crimes related to ATM robberies and data thefts in European countries was 149 percent higher than during the previous year. The loss caused by such criminal activity amounted to EUR 485 million.

Specialists are also more concerned about cases of hacking ATM software. The most noted case was in Russia and Ukraine, where the hackers used the gaps of ATM operating system. A virus stealing card data was found in twenty machines.

BS/2 is owned by “Penki kontinentai” group located in Lithuania. The company develops and installs ATM software and provides outsourcing services. Company products and services are sold in more than 60 countries. The company is a partner of a German company “Wincor Nixdor” in fifteen Eastern Europe and Central Asia countries.

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