Bulgarian woman busted for sophisticated and lucrative Bali ATM scam

Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

A Bulgarian woman was reportedly arrested after she allegedly stole millions upon millions with a lucrative ATM scam in Bali that was targeting foreigners while on vacation. 

She was arrested with around Rp 500 million worth of cash in different currencies, along with other evidence including a magnetic card reader, and computer devices, reports Kompas.

The 46-year-old woman has been identified in Indonesian reports by her initials IIT.

“IIT was captured in a luxury villa in Seminyak, Bali,” said Director of Economic Crime and Special Criminal Investigation Police Brigadier General on Monday, as quoted by Kompas. 

When arrested, the woman was drinking liquor and partying with six other foreign nationals, two of which were women and the other four men, according to Kompas. 

Based on the investigator’s examination, two of IIT’s friends were in trouble for violating immigration rules, while the other four were not found guilty of any criminal acts. 

The police hunted IIT down to her villa from a report from an Indonesian bank. The bank’s CCTV footage shows the woman and her colleagues taking apart something in a Mandiri ATM. This fishy footage prompted investigators to try and figure out what exactly was going on. 

The investigation reportedly revealed that IIT and her accomplices had embedded a router along with a small camera in the ATM. The router would record data from ATM card customers while the camera was to see customers’ valuable PIN numbers. Further investigation revealed that a number of other Bali ATMs fell victim to the same scamming style.

Having both account info and PIN numbers is what allowed IIT to withdraw all sorts of money from different customers, investigators allege. But she would allegedly take it little by little over periods of time so customers wouldn’t notice. 

“We estimate that over the two years, the offender has caused the loss of billions of rupiah to bank customers,” said Rachmad Wibowo of Indonesian Police’s Cyber Crime Investigation, as quoted by Kompas

Reports say she could get up to 10 years prison time if found guilty.

Police are reportedly still pursuing three other actors who they believe were involved in the scam. 

Photo: Illustration

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