How is cash refilled at an ATM

How the money gets into the ATM

Insert your bank card, enter your PIN, choose the amount and after a short wait, the desired banknotes will come out. This is how millions of Germans get their cash every day. Since the first modern ATMs were invented in Great Britain in the 1960s, the gray boxes with the keypad and the card slot have spread rapidly. The Sparkasse Tübingen set up the first ATM in Germany in 1968.

The more than 50,000 machines in banks, department stores and petrol stations are accessible around the clock and spew out billions of dollars every year - normally. Many machines are empty in Berlin and Brandenburg. The devices of 18 banks are affected. This is due to an indefinite strike by the money transport company Prosegur.

According to Ver.di, only 50 of the 350 employees were last in emergency operation. This week there will be more talks. Including at the highest level between the management and members of the Ver.di federal board.

Some institutes have now commissioned other service providers, while others have been putting off customers for days. "Due to a strike at our service provider, transactions are temporarily not possible on this device," says Deutsche Bank customers, for example, when they approach the machine of the industry leader. The bank apologizes and asks for your understanding.

Not every bank customer understands the unexpected refusal of cash at the machines, as many assume that the machines are filled every morning by the branch employees. But this is no longer the case in most branches. This service is provided by the value transport company - and the technology.

Computer plans the filling quantity of the machine

Software tracks the status of the payouts at each machine. It plans the optimal filling quantities and filling times. If things run out, a message is sent to the responsible cash-in-transit company, whose employees come and refill the cash boxes inside the machines.

In every ATM there are several cash cassettes for the various euro notes. Once the customer has entered his PIN and the desired amount, the machine contacts the bank's central computer, which checks the PIN. If there is still enough money in the account, the machine receives the approval.

The bills reach the output compartment via conveyor belts - the well-known rattle when you wait for the bills. To prevent the customer from receiving too many notes, for example because two are stuck together, they are checked by a sensor on their way.

Bank determines the combination of notes