I remember a scene from the movie Fast and Furious 6 where Ludacris, a member of Dominick Torredo’s team, manipulated an ATM (Automated Teller Machine) and money began spewing from it, you can imagine how people on the streets must have rushed to pick up the notes as they spilled out. So after hearing about a failed ATM burglary in the news someday, my friends and I debated how easy or difficult it must be to burgle one, a look at the metal machine seems to somehow say I am not giving up any money except you type in a password. Sadly, the reported thief in the news could not get any money out of the machine but ended up in a jail cell.
Trying to break into or manipulate an ATM is a serious crime with serious consequences in Nigeria as espoused in the Cyber Crimes (prohibition, Prevention) Act, 2015. The law in Section 30 states that:
“Any person who manipulates an ATM machine or Point of Sales terminal with the intention to defraud shall be guilty of an offence and upon conviction sentenced to five (5) years imprisonment or
Million Naira) fine or both”.
I guess now you must see my point about why it is a serious crime. Due to the fact that most ATM machines are located within banks or fitted by banks, it is not unusual to hear that staffs of a bank are involved in certain fraudulent acts with others to defraud the bank. That’s why sub-section 2 of section 30 stated above further provides that;
“Any employee of a financial institution found to have connived with another person or group of persons to perpetrate fraud using an ATM or point of sale device, shall be guilty of an offence and upon conviction sentenced to seven years imprisonment without an option of fine”.
In a nutshell, if you have been intending to burgle an ATM machine you should probably think twice except you believe 5 years in a Nigerian prison is an experience you will like to partake in.
Adedunmade Onibokun, Esq