ATMs speak out against bank transfer fraud


“Are you being scammed?” asks an ATM. Some branches of Shimane Bank installed a device Friday that issues a caution upon detecting conversation in front of its ATMs.

If conversation continues for a couple of seconds, the voice sensor activates an announcement which asks the user if they are sure it’s a genuine transaction, and may issue on-screen warnings as well. The device is relatively inexpensive and Shimane police are hoping its use will spread.

One problem with the system is that it can respond to unrelated conversation. However, a police officer said “it helps to keep people conscious of fraud, so it’s good in that regard.”

Some banks have also introduced a more costly system which detects the radio waves emitted from cell phones.

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so what to do with the 58000 J-Cops?

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Well, it's not entirely a bad idea, particularly for seniors who tend to be the ones getting duped the most. Awareness is the first line of defense in the prevention of crime, so if even a few are given pause by the automated message, then that's a win.

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Will this really be effective? Once a person has been convinced of something and they decide to do it, do you think they'll really turn around and reconsider their actions? Also, once a person has heard this a few times in the background, it'll eventually just become background noise and the brain will filter it out.

I guess the banks are trying to make some effort to be helpful, but I don't think this will be a good idea. It would be better for ongoing eduction efforts in all areas of society.

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That's nice! Japan really needs more talking devices. I am very thankful for the escalator at the train station where I board each day - it 'warns' people nonstop that it might be slippy at rainy days! Also coffee- and teacups should talk, maybe like "Please be careful! It is dangerous if the content of this cup is very hot, you could burn your mouth".

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