Dutch banks are to take all their outdoor ATMs out of service between 11pm and 7am with immediate effect in a bid to stop gangs attempting to blow them up.

The Dutch banking association says switching the ATMs off reduces the likelihood of an attempt to blow them up succeeding. One of the ways thieves try to blow up the machines is to place explosives in the money drawer which opens after cash has been pinned.

The measure is one of several put together by justice minister Ferd Grapperhaus, finance minister Wopke Hoekstra and the Dutch banking association and will be reassessed at the end of January.

The NVB says just 2% of cash withdrawals are made at night and that the impact on consumers will therefore be limited. ‘Safety is a priority,’ the organisation said.

Banks are also looking to move ATMs to areas where fewer people live and remove some altogether because of the danger explosions cause to locals.

Earlier this month, ABN Amro closed 470 ATMs which were located underneath or next to housing. Nearly all the 71 attempts to blow up ATMs so far this year were directed at ABN Amro machines.

Source:  www.DutchNews.nl