The public have been warned by police not to use Santander cash machines over fears several have been “compromised”.
Forces in Lancashire and Cheshire said they have received reports of issues with some of the bank’s ATMs.
The warning from Lancashire Police follows calls about suspicious devices on the bank’s machines across the county last week.
Officers were concerned criminals targeted the machines in a bid to steal card details and cash, and urged those who have lost money to contact Santander.
But the bank said only five ATMs had been tampered with and these were shut down on police request. None of its customers had reported being defrauded, a spokeswoman said.
She added: “Santander was contacted this weekend by police who requested that five ATM machines in the North West and Lancashire area be shut down due to potential criminal activity and vandalism.
“The five ATMs in question were shut down immediately. The Santander ATM network remains fully operational and we are assisting the police with their enquiries in relation to the five ATMs in the Lancashire area.
“Customers are always advised to remain vigilant and if concerned about any other ATM machines, they should contact the police immediately and not use them.”
Earlier, Lancashire Police tweeted: “Security at Santander ATMs in Lancs has been compromised. Advice is not to use them. If you have lost money please contact the bank and 101.”
Cheshire Police also issued a warning to avoid Santander machines in Wilmslow, near Manchester.
The force tweeted: “Cheshire Police have received reports of issues with Santander ATM’s in Wilmslow. Please do not use the machines and call your bank and 101.”
A spokesman for the Lancashire force said it is feared the issue could be more widespread.
He said: “We are advising the public to be vigilant, in particular of Santander machines, but of any cash machines.
“Report anything suspicious, have a visual check of the cashpoint and if in doubt leave it and go somewhere else.”
“It’s spread across the whole of Lancashire so it’s highly likely other forces may have had reports. ”
The force also issued advice to bank customers, including not to use a cash machine if it appears to have been tampered with and shielding the keypad when entering the PIN.
Many soon-to-be retirees ‘unclear’ about changes to state pension system
Many people approaching retirement are still in the dark about aspects of the new state pension, according to research from Which?
From Wednesday, the new state pension system will take effect, which will affect people reaching retirement age on or after April 6 and aims to be easier to understand.
Which? found that more than two-thirds (68%) of 50 to 64-year-olds are aware the changes are coming in, rising to 80% of those aged between 60 and 64.
But many people were unclear on the details of how the new system will work. Some 44% of people did not know what the full rate of the new state pension will be from April 6.
The full new single-tier state pension will be £155.65 a week. Usually people will need at least 10 years of qualifying National Insurance (NI) contributions to get any state pension.
And o nly 18% of the 1,000 people surveyed knew if they had ever been contracted out of the state pension. Being contracted out for even a short period of time could leave people with a much smaller pension than they were expecting.
Which? has produced a state pension guide to explains how the changes will impact people currently receiving or soon to be receiving their state pension and includes a state pension age calculator.
Which? executive director Richard Lloyd, said: “Next week sees major changes to the state pension, which forms a core part of many people’s retirement income.
“While it’s promising to see that awareness of the upcoming changes is high, we’re only half way there. More needs to be done to make sure that people understand what the changes are and what they mean for them.”
Pensions Minster Ros Altmann, said: “It is vital that people check what their state pension is likely to be, especially when planning their future later life income.
“The Government is introducing a new state pension system which will be easier to understand and a new digital online individual state pension forecast will be available to make things much easier.
“This is in public testing now and in the meantime anyone over age 50 can get a written statement showing their estimated state pension. I’m delighted that Which? is highlighting the new system and the need for more people to find out how the new rules will affect them.”
Gareth Shaw, head of consumer affairs at Saga Investment Services, said: “T he current system is horribly complicated, and the new single-tier will eventually wave away this complexity.
“But today’s generation of state pensioners need more help understanding what they’re entitled to.”
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