A reward of £25,000 is being offered to help nail a gang believed to be responsible for a string of cash machine raids in the Doncaster area.
Link, the firm which operates the UK’s cash machine network, has put forward the offer after a string of devastating robberies across the region which have seen raiders escape with more than £500,000.
In four months, ten cash machines have been targeted in towns and villages across South Yorkshire, North Nottinghamshire, Linconshire and Humberside.
Now, in a bid to catch the gang, Link is working in partnership with independent charity Crimestoppers to offer rewards for information relating to cash machine crime.
Working closely with different police agencies and departments, including the Dedicated Cheque and Plastic Crime Unit (DCPCU), a banking industry-sponsored special police unit, the partnership aims to support the police in their fight against crime and help inform the public about how they can protect themselves.
Link is offering rewards of up to £25,000 for information related to cash machine crime and is urging people to call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 with any information relating to such incidents. Information can be given completely anonymously and there is no need for anyone to leave any personal information.
Graham Mott, senior Link spokesman commented: “We’re urging the public to come forward with any information that they may have about cash machine crime, for example card skimming or physical attacks on cash machines themselves. “Even something that may sound insignificant could be part of a bigger picture and prove invaluable in convicting someone involved in cash machine crime.”
Link has also made available video footage seized from criminals who had installed a hidden miniature camera at an ATM to film people entering their PIN. It highlights the importance of shielding the keypad when you enter your PIN. Cash machines are generally very safe to use however Link has put together a guide on what to look out for when using any cash machine:
* Scan the whole ATM area before you approach it. Avoid using the ATM if there are suspicious-looking individuals around.
* Check to see if anything looks unusual or suspicious about the ATM showing it might have been tampered with. If it appears to have any attachments to the card slot or key pad, do not use it. Do not try to remove any devices attached to the machine.
* Stand close to the ATM and shield the keypad with your hand when keying in your PIN.
* If your card gets jammed or retained by the machine report this immediately to your bank or building society, ideally using your mobile phone while you are still in front of the machine.
* Check that others in the queue keep a good distance from you.
* Keep your PIN secret. Never reveal your PIN to anyone, not to someone claiming to be from your bank, the police and especially not to a “helpful” stranger.
* Be especially cautious if strangers try to distract you or offer to help at an ATM, even if your card is stuck or you are experiencing difficulty with the transaction.
* Regularly check your account balance and keep your receipt to check against your statement.
In recent weeks, cash machines have also stolen or attacked in Tickhill, Stainforth, Hatfield, Crowle, Epworth, Blyth, Gainsborough, Harthill in Worksop, Misterton and South Cave.
Police have previously said they believe all the incidents are linked with the gang using diggers to wrench cash machines from walls.