Scammers using 'cash claw' to rob ATMs
ATM customers in Dublin have been warned about a surge in cases of 'cash trapping', with more than 180 incidents in just three months.
The spike was thought to have been linked to a new device used by fraudsters called a 'cash claw'.
Criminals use the implement to jam cash machines, allowing them to steal money.
The claw-like implement sits inside the slot that dispenses notes and grabs hold of customers' money.
While there were no incidents in December, nearly all the 188 cases this year took place in September, October and November.
"This device is found in several other European countries, including the UK," the Irish Payment Services Organisation (IPSO), which compiles the data, said.
However, there was good news when it came to the overall number of cases of ATM fraud, which is down 59pc on last year.
Some 212 incidents were reported this year, 300 fewer than the figure for 2011.
But the majority -- 92pc -- took place in the last four months of this year.
Cash trapping accounted for 89pc of the total. And Dublin is being targeted the most. More ATM fraud occurred in the capital than anywhere else, with the highest number (27) recorded in South Co Dublin.
Significant rates were also reported in Dublin 2 (25 cases), Dublin 15 (19 cases) and Dublin 6 (17 cases).
There were 14 bank machine attacks in Dublin 4, 13 in Dublin 8 and 11 in Dublin 12.
The worst hit areas outside the capital were Kildare (25), Meath (10), Wexford (8) and Cork (8).