Experts warn of new malware that makes ATMs spit out wads of cash, linked to hacks in Thailand


Security researchers are warning of a new form of malware that can make ATMs spit out wads of cash.

The malware, dubbed ATMJackpot, originates from Hong Kong but has links to a similar form of malware that was used to carry out similar attacks on ATMs in Thailand in 2016, Gizmodo reports.

However, it is not clear how the malware is being used, whether the hackers are installing it remotely or physically.

ATM jackpotting is a technique used by cyber criminals that allows them to take control of an ATM, forcing it to rapidly dispense cash.

Hackers can takeover the ATM in a number of different ways but normally by gaining physical access to the ATM in order to infect it with malware.

They do this by physically unlocking the door of the ATM and connecting a USB drive that contains the malware to the motherboard of the ATM.

In Thailand, hackers used malware to withdraw 12.29 million baht from ATMs in Phetchaburi, Hua Hin, Chumphon, Phuket and Bangkok.

The malware, known as ATM Ripper, was stored on the chip of a fake ATM card, which was inserted into the card holder.

Shortly after the money was stolen in Thailand, thieves went onto to carry out similar attacks using the ATM Ripper malware, stealing more than $2 million from ATMs across Asia.

The gang who carried out the attacks in Thailand fled before they could be charged.

However, last month, police in Spain announced the arrest of a Ukrainian man who is suspected of being the mastermind of the crime gang that eventually went onto steal more than €1bn from ATMs in more than 40 countries, including in Thailand.

The man identified only as Denis K, was described as a “computer genius” by Rafael Pérez, the head of Spain’s cyber crime unit.

Officers from Europol said law enforcement agencies around the world had been investigating the gang since 2016 after carrying out attacks in the UK, Belarus, Romania, Taiwan and Thailand.

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