5 Ways Your Wireless Router Uses IoT Connectivity for ATM Security

Skimming. Malware. MitM attacks. Jackpotting. Physical attacks.

ATM owners and operators are familiar with all these tactics and more. Skimming, in particular, is on the rise - especially in the U.S., where many terminals are not yet equipped with encrypting pin pads (EPP).

Additionally, bad actors are not shy about using chains, blowtorches, and even bombs to break into ATMs. As criminals become more determined and sophisticated, it may seem that no ATM can be fully secure.

To counter such attacks, ATM operators now face a dizzying array of security options, including firewalls, biometric authentication, expensive intrusion detection systems, CCTV surveillance, cash cassette trackers, and EPP that must be in place by the end of 2024.

While there isn't a 'one size fits all' solution to ATM fraud, the right IoT connectivity plan - starting with a quality 4G/5G Cat M1 wireless router - can address several security concerns at once.

What is IoT connectivity?

The 'Internet of Things' (IoT) refers to one or more devices that require Internet connectivity to exchange data with other devices. IoT routers ensure that connection is reliable and secure.

Consider a full-service ATM fleet that might normally rely on phone lines and an onsite DSL connection. By switching to a quality wireless router with IoT connectivity, ATM operators can monitor their equipment more quickly and securely.

How can my IoT wireless router enhance ATM security?

OptConnect mylo router for low-bandwidth devices

Thanks to IoT routers, the days of analog dial-up are at an end. The best wireless routers are lightning fast and broad in coverage. Routers that work best with ATMs also offer:

1. A secure IP network and safe data transmission

While it might seem obvious, your IoT-enabled ATM is only as secure as its IP network. A public IP connection is inherently risky. So risky, in fact, that it could be viewed as an open invitation to would-be thieves.

By contrast, a private IP connection ensures the integrity of data transmissions from (and to) your machines via encryption and cryptographic protocols like SSL/TLS for web traffic or IPsec for network-level security. Basically, a private IP protects sensitive transactional data from hacking attempts.

At OptConnect, our IoT routers work with a DHCP server for local automatic IP assignment and can assign static IPs, offer NAT with VPN Passthru. They are also domain-name addressable.

It's a no brainer. Ensuring IP network security is a simple first step that pays off immediately.

OptConnect mylo is specifically designed for ATM, POS, and sensor applications. Learn more

2. Remote monitoring and diagnostics

ATM operators: How simple is your diagnostic and maintenance process?

Most technicians travel almost non-stop to perform onsite maintenance visits. Depending on each machine's location, those regular visits can add up. Also, they may be inconvenient for building owners and ATM users.

Luckily, with an IoT-enabled router, it's easy to perform diagnostics remotely for less travel time and downtime. These remote updates also reduce risks by ensuring that security patches are current.

3. Tamper detection

An increasing number of IoT wireless routers now include sensors that can register motion and detect tampering attempts. When sensors register suspicious activity, an immediate alert goes out to the ATM owner.

When your IoT equipment can alert you immediately to security risks, that's money well spent.

Of course, some IoT routers don't automatically sense, collect, process, and transmit data on connectivity, movement, temperature, and other parameters. But if these features aren't available now, don't worry - they're coming soon. Just ask your preferred vendor for clarification.

Pro tip: If you have a huge fleet, consider adding managed services to your plan. You'll sleep a lot better at night.

Learn more about OptConnect fully managed IoT connectivity services with 24/7/365 support.

4. Geo fencing

Geo-fencing illustration (OptConnect 2023)

Even the best technology can't put a complete stop to ATM fraud. But geo-fencing comes close.

With geo-fencing capability, your IoT router can create a virtual boundary around your ATM via location data or GPS coordinates - for continuous, real-time ATM monitoring.

Geo-fencing also helps control ATM access by cardholders. If someone attempts to access the ATM outside of its geo-fence, or if the technology senses unauthorized activity, access may be limited or even denied. In this way, ATM operators can significantly turn the tables against perpetrators while protecting users.

If surveillance equipment or other access control systems are in place, geo-fencing can also integrate with that technology.

Stay tuned for geo-fencing capability with OptConnect.

5. Predictive analytics

Remote access is important. So are the other benefits mentioned above. But what if your wireless ATM router could serve up insights like these?

  • Maintenance notifications
  • Cash usage patterns
  • Transaction history
  • Estimates on part failure/replacement needs
  • Power usage and efficiency
  • Temperature readouts
  • Usage trends, including peak periods
  • Compliance monitoring and corrective actions

With real-time predictive data, it's much easier to take proactive measures and address or resolve ATM issues before they hinder overall performance or security.

Don't wait. Choose the right connectivity option and help stop ATM hackers in their tracks.

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