How long does the bank keep ATM CCTV footage?

You know that sinking feeling. You take out your bank card from your wallet to pay for something. Suddenly, you realise that the card you’re carrying isn’t yours. Then it hits you: you were scammed. Remember the total stranger who ‘helped’ you retrieve your card that was apparently stuck in the ATM earlier?

So, what can you do now? First, notify the bank immediately, so that your missing card can be blocked. You can also block the card using the Nedbank Money app on your phone.

But was the crime captured on camera? How long does the bank keeps CCTV footage? Can you access this footage?

Not all CCTV footage belongs to the bank

The first thing to remember is that we don’t operate all the CCTV cameras covering ATMs. Yes, there is a bank camera covering each ATM, but it only covers a certain angle and experienced criminals may be careful to avoid it.

It’s important point to remember that the faster you act, the safer your money will be

On average, we store surveillance footage for up to 90 days. This footage is admissible in a court of law as evidence, should perpetrators be caught. But the bank can only give this footage to law enforcement officials investigating the case and not directly to the customer.

Mall management is the next line of defence

If criminals do manage to avoid the ATM camera, police investigating the crime will have to rely on the CCTV cameras covering the area around the ATMs. However, these cameras don’t belong to us.

This CCTV security is the responsibility of the business premises in which the ATM is located – usually a mall. So, how long that footage is available to the police depends on the mall’s policy on security footage – although many also store CCTV footage for up to 90 days. The bank will always do its utmost to retrieve this footage for you, if it is within 90 days of the card theft.

Fastest is best

What’s most important, if you are scammed by a criminal at an ATM (whether it’s a card swap, a card skimmed or plain theft), is to remember that the faster you act, the safer your money will be. You can block a card immediately via the Nedbank Money app, but then report the crime online as well, with a request for the CCTV footage. Or go to the nearest Nedbank branch to enquire about footage or call the Nedbank Contact Centre on 0800 555 111.

The sooner you let us know you have been the victim of card theft, and open a case with the police, the greater the chance of preserving the CCTV footage that could contain valuable evidence against the criminals. If there is an arrest, that footage could help the police prosecute successfully, and make your ATM experience that little bit safer in future.

Apart from card theft, there are many other scams that fraudsters use to get access to your personal details online. Senior citizens can be particularly vulnurable to phishing, smishing, vishing, and other social-engineering tricks. Learn how to protect yourself.