ATMs keep the cardholder’s PIN and other information safe from fraudsters by using the latest encryption software such as Triple DES or 3DES (Data Encryption Standard).
Encryption means that the cardholder’s information is encoded in a way that only the cardholder (or computer) with the key/code (right information) can decode it.
An IBM team developed the Single Data Encryption Standard (1DES)
in 1974 in order to protect the security of sensitive digital information. However, with the rapid development of computer technology and hacking skills all over the world, a much stronger and safer encryption was needed. Triple DES is an improvement on the Single Data Encryption Standard. It is much slower, but much safer and more difficult to crack than its earlier predecessor. The 3DES uses three digital (64-bit) keys to protect/encode the cardholder’s PIN and account information, while the 1DES uses only one such key. For more in-depth information on Triple DES, click here.
Australian regulation requires that all ATM Automated Teller Machines have to use the 3DES encryption software. However, there are a lot of old ATMs that are using the 1DES encryption and they must be upgraded in the next year or face being disallowed access to the ATM network.
There are some ATM operators in Australia struggling to upgrade their networks to this new security standard within the deadline set by the governing bodies of the ATM industry. They are quite likely to pass on the substantial amounts of money required for upgrades (up to $6000) to their merchants. Also, be aware that some of the older 1DES ATMs are not upgradeable.
Always ask whether you are getting a 3DES machine. All our ATMs are brand new and 3DES compliant.
Next - Back to FAQ main