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Public Banking Terminals or Automated Teller Machines are devices that allow users to perform financial transactions digitally, such as storing and withdrawing money, without a human clerk.
If the login and password for an account are both known, they may be entered into the ATM to gain access to the account. There is no risk of an alarm sounding in this process as no hacking is involved.
However, if the bank account details are not known, it is possible to hack ATMs. JC Denton must have at least basic training in the computer skill to be able to hack the terminals. However the higher JC's training in the computer skill, the more money can be obtained from a given bank account. Also, for lower skill levels, a hack is more likely to set off an alarm if the timer runs out before money is taken from an account.
If JC is trained, he can access the ATM after the ICE Breaker meter has passed the halfway mark, and can only take 50% of the funds inside. If he has advanced training, he can use ATMs after the meter hits the quarter way mark, and may take all of the money in the account. At master level, he can use the ATM almost instantly, and can take 150% of the money in the account.
One major drawback of hacking a Public Banking Terminal is that a maximum of one account can be hacked into from each machine. If there are multiple bank accounts associated with an ATM, JC will be able to hack only one of these. Even if the login and password are known for a different account, if the ATM has already been hacked, JC will not be able to input these details.
- Once an account has been hacked, an ATM will display an error message the next time it is interacted with, stating "Sorry, this terminal is out of service". Interestingly, the error ID is ERR 06MJ12. This further supports the idea that the Majestic 12-controlled Page Industries owns and maintains the ATMs.
- According to this same error screen, there are 231,000 PageNet Banking Terminals worldwide.