ATM or slot machine? Devices spew cash
Some Australians received more than they bargained for Tuesday from Commonwealth Bank ATMs.
March 1st, 2011
07:58 AM ET

ATM or slot machine? Devices spew cash

An Australian bank was mortified Tuesday to discover many of its automated teller machines were handing out large amounts of extra cash to customers, media there reported.

"They could take out $500 even if there was only $100 in their account," a Commonwealth Bank spokesman told the Sydney Morning Herald.

About 40 Commonwealth Bank ATMs were being unusually generous for several hours because of a network problem that occurred during routine maintenance, according to the Morning Herald.

The same problem earlier in the day had shut down the bank's online and telephone banking, The Australian reported.

Those who hit the jackpot won't be able to keep their windfalls. Not legally, anyway.

"People should realize that even though an ATM has dispensed cash, they are not entitled to that money and are committing a criminal offense if they keep it," Detective Superintendent Colin Dyson of the New South Wales police said in a written statement.

"They should also realize that ATM locations are covered extensively by surveillance," Dyson noted.

Twitter lit up with people reporting long lines at Commonwealth ATMs across the country.

One of the most re-tweeted remarks originated with the Australian TV celebrity show "The 7PM Project," which said: "They might have cancelled Two And A Half Men, but Charlie Sheen's got a new job. He's in charge of the ATMs at the Commonwealth Bank."

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Filed under: Australia • Business • Crime • Technology
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Paul Zickus

    How come I never have such luck?

    March 1, 2011 at 8:03 am | Report abuse |
  2. Bapu


    March 1, 2011 at 8:19 am | Report abuse |

    Charlie Sheen did it.

    March 1, 2011 at 9:01 am | Report abuse |
  4. Veritas

    Thanks Charlie appreciate the xtra cash come on over we'll party like it's 2010!

    March 1, 2011 at 9:25 am | Report abuse |


    March 1, 2011 at 9:34 am | Report abuse |
  6. Where's my damned keys?

    That Charlie Sheen reference has to be one of the dumbest, least funny things I've ever seen inserted into a story for comic relief. . .and we're talking CNN here, folks.

    March 1, 2011 at 10:53 am | Report abuse |
  7. Miss Anthrope

    Well, it all went into a briefcase, if you know what I mean! 😉

    March 1, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Benjamin

    That bank will fight 'till its last breath to prosecute anyone who received a couple hundred extra bucks, but damned if anyone does anything about the Wall Street fatcats who robbed billions from the human population.

    March 1, 2011 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Veritas

    @Wheres my damn keys perhaps you thought this was comedy central, it is'nt it's cnn where where the inane is sensationalized.

    March 1, 2011 at 3:45 pm | Report abuse |
  10. LmD

    Give me my damn money and quit sending it overseas! I want to play slots with an ATM, why can't I be so lucky? Wrong place at the wrong time, again.

    March 2, 2011 at 10:25 am | Report abuse |
  11. cash machine vault

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