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When Three Turks' Goose is Cooked

Three Turkish Nationals Involved in a Sophisticated ATM Skimming Scheme Are Busted by Bali Police
Police in Bali have arrested three Turkish nationals believed to be have defrauded the ATM accounts of some 12 customers of Bank Mandiri over a period of only two days.

As reported by NusaBali, in custody are Kimis Dogan (43), Mentes Mehmet Ali (29), dan Koc Tayfun (35).

The director of the criminal division at provincial police headquarters, Police Commissioner Sang Made Mahendra Jaya, said on Monday, March 3, 2018, that the trio had admitted to stealing data from the accounts of 12 people living in Bali. Adding: “We continue to investigate how many victims had their pin numbers taken by the three suspects. What’s clear, we have evidence of 83 ATM-like cards now in our custody. These cards were used to steal the data of bank customers. In addition, we have 4 computer routers than we have also seized.”

Police believe at least 12 banking customer in Bali may have had their pin numbers stolen and suffered losses from their accounts as a result.

Commission Mahendra Jaya said two of the three men were caught in the act at at ATM at Canggu Mart on Jalan Batu Mejan Desa Canggu in North Kuta on Friday, March 9, 2018, shortly after midnight. Police say the three are part of an international crime syndicate with each of the three having their individual area of expertise in skimming and misuing ATM codes.

Police say data and pin number stolen from the ATMs is immediately communicated via the Internet to the headquarters of their crime network in Turkey. Two specialized pieces of equipment are used on a targeted ATM machine. One instrument is installed at the back of the ATM unit and another over the keyboard. A sophisticated small camera is also installed to record the unsuspecting victim’s pin number.

Once an ATM customer has completed a transacion, the details of the ATM number and pin-code are captured by the crime syndicate in Turkey. Meanwhile, the 3 accomplices working in Bali are able to observe via their handphones the online banking activity and bank balances of their victims.

Once the data has been successfully captured in Turkey, new codes were sent to the 3 men in Bali permitting them to make withdrawals from local ATM machines using preset codes on electronic cards created in Turkey.

The three Turkish men told police how they traveled frequently in and out of Bali, Thailand and Malaysia in order to fleece ATM customers across the region. The men’s last visit to Bali was in January-February 2018, but they told police that they only began skimming ATM machines on March 7-8, 2018.

“During two days of March 7-8, 2018, they managed to rob 12 bank customers in Bali. One day later, we managed to capture them together with physical evidence of their crimes that were brought from China or purchased in Bali,” said Mahendra Jaya. Among the items seized by police were 4 routers, 4 cameras, 80 elctronic cards, a data cable, 5 laptop computers, 2 TP links, silicone glue, a WiFi mobile camera, and 4 handphones.

Koc Tayfun and Mentes Mehmet Ali were apprehended at the ATM Canggu Mart at 00:15 a.m. on March 9, 2018. Two hours later, at 2:15 am police arrested Kimis Dogan at a hotel on Jalan Dewi Sartika in Kuta.

Police received reports from the regional office of Bank Mandiri who detected suspicious transactions emanating from the ATM in Canggu. Bank officials using surveillance CCTV cameras recorded one of the men installing equipment on the ATM.

A source at Police Headquarters in Bali said: “Based on CCTV recordings a suspicious foreign national used the Mandiri ATM at the Canggu Mart on Wednesday, March 7, 2018 where the man had installed a skimming device. This information was forwarded to the police who immediately commenced an investigation.”

Police placed the ATM under surveillance resulting in the detection of Koc Tayfun and Mentes Mehmet Ali trying to remove the skimmer in the early hours of March 9, 2018. Police swooped in to make an arrest of the two men who quickly gave up the name and location of the third man, Kimis Dogan, staying in a hotel on Jalan Dewi Sartika in Kuta.

It is expected that the trio will be charged under a section of the criminal code dealing with cybercrime punishable by up to 7 years imprisonment.

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