Saudi Arabia’s Largest ATM Provider Adds Blockchain Authentication

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ATMs don’t have the best reputation for being secure, as scammers target these machines as an easy way to make a quick bit of cash. In a bid to make ATMs more secure and to help keep your money in safe, Alhamrani Universal – Saudi Arabia’s leading distributor of ATMs – has partnered up with ShoCard to develop and implement biometric and blockchain based security measures. That’s right, if you use an Opteva in Saudi, there is a good chance you’re going to need to pass some sort of KYC before the machine will give you your cash – hopefully you remembered to bring your phone to the ATM.

Five-Factor Authentication for ATM Withdrawals

Currently, ATMs only have one-factor authentication – your personal identification (PIN) number. Scammers have been devising ways of stealing your PIN numbers for years, whether it be by setting up cloned websites asking for this information or even by going as far as installing a camera on an ATM to watch you type it in. ShoCard’s new ATM software will replace the old PIN system and instead use a QR Code, timestamps, session IDs, and selfies with ID cards. If you’re in a rush to get cash out, it’s probably best you head to a different ATM, as this sounds like it could cause major queues.

Solving This Issue

While not every store around the world will accept cryptocurrency, there are still ways to convert your crypto into cash to pay for goods while you’re out and about in town. Simply head over to your nearest crypto ATM and withdraw cold, hard cash as soon as you make a transfer from your wallet to the ATM – it’s really that simple. There are now more than 4,000 of these ATMs worldwide, and there are hundreds more being added every week.

Standing up to Attacks

ShoCard’s new ATM solution might solve the problem of PIN theft, but it still won’t protect the ATM from malware or physical attachments designed to skim user information. If anything, this extra layer of “security” will give skimmers more user information and allow them to enter more accounts than just their bank. Conversely, crypto ATMs are relatively impervious to attacks and skimming. No card or USB can be inserted into a crypto ATM, meaning no malware can be loaded into the machine. This also makes skimming virtually impossible on crypto ATMs, leading General Bytes to brand the latest crypto ATM malware as total garbage.

ShoCard and Alhamrani Universal are trying to look out for consumer safety, creating a harder to use ATM that is built around total security, even if it is more cumbersome to use. Nobody wants to upload a selfie and verify four other documents to withdraw cash, but this new development is certainly a step in the right direction