Police in the central resort town Nha Trang in Khanh Hoa Province have detained a Russian man for trying to break into an ATM in the town’s backpacker area.
Leksii Vackvasaki, 35, was allegedly trying to pry open the control panel of an ATM on Nguyen Thien Thuat Street on Thursday morning when a local discovered his act and reported it to the police.
Police said the man was carrying screwdrivers, a roll of black electrical tape and devices to access and read card information. Vackvasaki claimed he used the tape to block the ATM’s security camera and was trying to steal card information of the ATM’s previous users, according to Tuoi Tre newspaper.
Police are still investigating the case, and would propose charges of “deliberate destruction of property” and “theft” against the foreigner.
Despite calls from IT experts to raise security around payment systems, ATM networks in Vietnam remain a usual theft target. In March, police in Da Nang arrested two Chinese nationals who were attempting to install devices at local ATMs to steal users’ card information. Another gang including members from Malaysia, Singapore, the U.S. and Vietnam were arrested by police in the southern city of Can Tho the same month for similar crimes. Last December, a court in Ho Chi Minh City sentenced a Peruvian man to 18 years in prison as investigation found his gang had cracked open many ATMs across the country in 2014 and 2015 and stolen a total of VND6 billion ($264,000).