Lancashire and Cheshire police have taken the extreme step of warning the public not to use an entire bank's network of cash machines at the moment, suggesting that the money-giving terminals of Santander may have been compromised in some way and suggesting locals revert to bartering possessions and sexual favours to pay for services in the short term.
Given the modernity of the day and the crime, the warning was posted on the internet, with Lancs police saying: "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."
Separately, Cheshire Police also warned of a hack in progress, saying it had received "...reports of issues with Santander ATM's in Wilmslow" and also asking customers across its area not to risk accessing their accounts, lest they be emptied of their meagre contents by a man -- possibly speaking with a Russian accent -- wearing a black hooded jumper.
For its part, Santander says it's investigating and that it only appears to only have five troubled machines, with a bank spokesperson saying: "Santander was contacted this weekend by police, who requested that 5 ATM machines in the North West and Lancashire area be shut down due to potential criminal activity and vandalism. The 5 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 5 ATMs in the Lancashire area." [Sky]