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SecurCash Uses RFID to Securely Service ATMs

A Dutch company that shuttles cash between automated teller machines, cash centers and banks is using RFID to reduce overall administration costs, ensure its compliance with insurance regulations and provide better customer service.
By Rhea Wessel
A driver receives delivery assignment, then takes possession of the assigned load of cartridges that has been placed on a trolley holding as many as 16 cartridges. The trolley and its cartridges pass through the RFID portal at the cash center, which reads the cartridges' tags. That data is used to document the exact time the cash changed hands and calculate the total value of the driver's load, which is needed for insurance purposes. "Our insurance only covers a certain amount of cash," Rensenbrink explains. "We now know how much money is in each truck, so we don't exceed that limit.".

Upon arrival at the ATM to be filled, a driver follows a work order displayed on a handheld wireless reader. This instructs the driver to insert a particular cassette into the ATM. The driver uses the reader on the handheld to scan the cassette in the truck, confirming that it's the correct one, then carries it to the ATM. After going through all the required security clearances and entering all the necessary passwords, the driver opens the ATM and exchanges its old cassette with the new one.

By year's end, the company expects to have each ATM outfitted with a 13.56 MHz RFID interrogator to encode encrypted data onto an HF RFID tag attached to the outgoing cassette. That data will consist of the exact amount of cash still inside the outgoing cassette. Eventually, the reader will also interrogate the new cartridge's tag to determine the amount of cash it is receiving, and if it's in the right slot.

Although tagging the cassettes and installing an RFID portal at the cash center is relatively easy, equipping the ATMs with RFID is more problematic, de Ridder says, largely because it requires cooperation from a number of entities involved in the cash supply chain, as well as compliance with various regulations.

Back at the cash center, the driver stacks a trolley with empty or nearly empty cartridges, and leads them back through the portal reader. Once again, the tags are read and the total amount of cash calculated. The time of the reading is noted because of the change in liability.

The system will allow SecurCash to save time on pickups and deliveries, and to be more precise when telling its customers where cash cartridges are located and how much cash is in them. What's more, neither the driver nor the attendant at the cash center will ever have to open another ATM cartridge to count the money within.

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