Cash In Transit
Enhanced electronic locking systems to accommodate unique security needs of ATMs
- By Travis Ferry
- Sep 01, 2018
By definition, cash-in-transit (CIT) is the physical
transfer of banknotes, coins, credit cards and items of
value from one location to another. These locations
may include cash centers, bank branches, ATMs,
large retailers and other premises holding large
amount of cash. The industry, however, is generally divided into two
sectors: transaction processing and ATM servicing.
CIT ATM services usually include cash replenishment, cash reconciliation,
deposit pickup and verification, and the transportation
of cash and valuables in an armored vehicle. The first ATM was installed
in London 50 years ago, and these cash dispensing machines
are still considered an integral part of the banking industry today.
There are no exact figures for how many ATMs are in use worldwide,
but the Global ATM Market and Forecasts to 2020 by U.K.
research and consulting firm RBR, estimates a total of four million
active ATMs by 2020.
GardaWorld, an international security company headquartered
in Montreal, Quebec, is one of the major players in the CIT industry.
Canada is one of four regions that has the highest number of ATMs
per million people and of the 65,000 ATMs in Canada, GardaWorld
services thousands of them.
The Secure Lock
With tens of thousands of dollars in cash stored in these machines,
and the high frequency of transportation to different locations, the
importance of having a secure lock that can only be accessed by an
authorized user remains a high priority for banks, CIT companies
and more. Before electronic locks, service personnel who access
ATMs have traditionally used combination locks or locks accessed
by a key. However, due to the ongoing attacks on ATMs, which hinders
the cash cycle, crime prevention measures and more robust security
solutions have been steadily increasing.
According to the ATM Benchmarking Study 2016 and Industry
Report completed by ATMIA and management consulting company
Accenture, 50 percent of the ATM operators who participated in the
global study confirmed an enhanced physical locking system was
installed on the cabinet. Based on an earlier study, ATM theft prevention
measures are evolving quickly, and likely to be implemented
worldwide. Although advanced technology exists, such as anti-skimming
and gas-attack solutions, there are still multiple advantages of
deploying an electronic lock.
In October 2017, the electronic lock services specialists at Garda-
World, including Vince Priolo, one of their members with more than
30 years in the security industry, identified the need for a better security
solution and worked with company management to bring an
advanced locking system to GardaWorld-serviced ATMs throughout
Canada. The lock needed to be simple to program and service, provide
the ability to share assets and be a secure solution for its customers.
Of all the ATMs GardaWorld deploys and services in Canada,
thousands of them are installed with solutions designed to protect
an ATMs’ entire cash cycle by using time-limited, single-use codes,
electronic locking keys and other features.
Sargent and Greenleaf (S&G) recently launched A-Series with a
display that met all of GardaWorld’s criteria for a next generation
solution. This electronic lock includes a large 30-character display
with universally recognizable text, codes and icons to make programming
and servicing much simpler. These features allow GardaWorld
technicians and other authorized end-users to immediately determine
and resolve any issues without having to rely on audio feedback and
LED flashes or time-consuming troubleshooting steps.
“We have been using other locking systems from Sargent and
Greenleaf and are pleased with the faster installation process, reduced
activation time and greater functionality, because of the large
display screen,” Priolo said. “This lock allows our technicians to have
a more intuitive service process, since the unit displays all the steps on
the screen and a secure locking system for our customers.”
Providing an Audit Trail
This particular electronic lock, when combined with S&G’s lock
management software (LMS), can quickly provide the end-user with
comprehensive audit trail reports showing when the lock was accessed
and by whom. Other locks in the marketplace require a small
electronic key to be programmed and used for transferring the audit
trail data from the lock and this key must be physically sent to the
audit reporting software to view the report. The ASWD allows the
transfer to be completed with any USB, no preparatory programming
It’s now important that CIT companies are able to share access
with other companies by simply sending a secure, encryption file between
LMS software installations. CIT companies no longer have to
setup time-consuming meetings to share access with an ATM lock.
“One of the benefits of using this type of lock is that it is connected
to LMS, giving us the ability to remotely transfer data without
having to physically be at the lock,” Priolo said. “With other locking
systems in the marketplace, each party needs to be present at the lock
in order for files to be transferred and exported, but with LMS and
S&G we can provide both through a computer which saves time and
money for all parties.”
Training for these locking systems and software is paramount.
Giving CIT technicians the tools to be able to quickly and accurately
service an ATM keeps both employees and the money safe.
Ongoing training to ensure service is completed
correctly minimizes premise time and simplifies
ATM service. ATM security technology will continue
to increase, and it all starts with having a
highly secure lock.
This article originally appeared in the September 2018 issue of Security Today.