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Title:
SECURITY APPARATUS FOR ATM
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2017/203276
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
An ATM includes a safe (1) that contains a note dispenser (4) including a plurality of currency cassettes (8) in a cabinet (6). The currency cassettes (8) are each removable from the cabinet (6) along a respective removal path. The cabinet is slidably moveable from the safe (1). The security apparatus includes a support frame (20) securable to an ATM and moveable with the cabinet of the note dispenser, into and out of the safe. It includes first and second upright support members (22,24) positioned to either side of the removal paths of the currency cassettes (8); and at least one barrier (16), each barrier associated with at least one currency cassette and supported between the upright support members. The barrier (16) is moveable between a first position preventing removal of the associated currency cassette, along its respective removal path, and a second position permitting removal of the currency cassette (8).

Inventors:
CALDER, Paul (34 Dryden Road, Loanhead, Midlothian EH20 9LZ, EH20 9LZ, GB)
Application Number:
GB2017/051501
Publication Date:
November 30, 2017
Filing Date:
May 26, 2017
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
SCOTIA SAFES LIMITED (34 Dryden Road, Loanhead, Midlothian EH20 9LZ, EH20 9LZ, GB)
International Classes:
G07F19/00; G07D11/00
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
MCPHERSON, Michael (Marks & Clerk LLP, Atholl Exchange6 Canning Street, Edinburgh EH3 8EG, EH3 8EG, GB)
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Claims:
CLAIMS:

1. A security apparatus for an ATM, the ATM comprising a safe that contains a note dispenser including a plurality of currency cassettes in a cabinet, wherein the currency cassettes are each removable from the cabinet along a respective removal path and the cabinet is slidably moveable from the safe;

the security apparatus comprising:

a support frame securable to an ATM and moveable with the cabinet of the note dispenser, into and out of the safe, and comprising first and second upright support members positioned to either side of the removal paths of the currency cassettes in use; and

at least one barrier, each barrier associated with at least one currency cassette and supported between the upright support members;

wherein the barrier is moveable between a first position preventing removal of the associated currency cassette, along its respective removal path, and a second position permitting removal of the currency cassette.

2. The security apparatus of claim 1 wherein a plurality of barriers is provided, each associated with at least one currency cassette. 3. The security apparatus of claim 1 wherein the first and second support members of the support frame are located in use to either side of the front, currency cassette removal end, of the cabinet.

4. The security apparatus of any one of claims 1 to 3 wherein the support frame further comprises at least one generally horizontally disposed further support member connecting to the first and second support members.

5. The security apparatus of any preceding claim wherein the support frame is secured to the cabinet.

6. The security apparatus of any preceding claim wherein the support frame further comprises at least one securing member, to secure the support frame to a part of the ATM other than the cabinet, in use.

7. The security apparatus of claim 6 wherein each of the first and second upright support members has a securing member attached; and each of said securing members are fixed to respective sliding rails of a telescopic sliding rail mechanism that supports the cabinet in sliding engagement with the safe.

8. The security apparatus of claim 7 wherein the securing members of the support frame take the form of plates one to each side of the cabinet, each plate fixing to the respective sliding rail and the respective upright support member. 9. The security apparatus of any preceding claim further comprising at least one tie plate, each tie plate fixed to a respective first or second upright support member and running from the support member along the side of the cabinet.

10. The security apparatus of claim 9 wherein the at least one tie plate extends to the back of the cabinet and around a back edge.

1 1. The security apparatus of any preceding claim further comprising a telescopic sliding rail mechanism to support the security apparatus, additional to any telescopic sliding rail mechanism provided for the ATM in the absence of the security apparatus,

12. The security apparatus of claim 1 1 wherein a pair of telescopic sliding rail mechanisms is provided to support the security apparatus and each of the pair is mounted to a side of and towards or at the bottom of a respective side of the cabinet. 13. The security apparatus of claim 1 1 wherein at least one sliding rail mechanism is provided underneath the cabinet to support at least one of the first and second upright support members.

14. The security apparatus of any preceding claim wherein the first and second upright support members are secured to respective sliding rails of a telescopic sliding rail mechanism.

15. The security apparatus of any preceding claim further comprising a pivoting telescopic support that includes a support base fitted inside at the bottom of the safe in use, which mounts a pivoting telescopic sliding rail mechanism.

16. The security apparatus of claim 15 wherein the pivoting telescopic sliding rail mechanism includes a pair of pivoting rails, each mounted at a pivot end to the support base at either side of the front of the cabinet, the pivoting rails having sliding rails that run along them.

17. The security apparatus of claim 16 wherein the pivoting rails are lockable in an upright position. 18. The security apparatus of claim 16 or claim 17 wherein one or more transverse bracing members run between the pivoting rails.

19. The security apparatus of any one of claims 1 to 14 wherein the support frame of security apparatus is mounted to a carriage that is slidably moveable from the safe.

20. The security apparatus of claim 19 wherein the carriage supports the cabinet of the ATM and the support frame of the said security apparatus.

21. The security apparatus of any preceding claim wherein the at least one barrier is supported by both the first and second upright support members.

22. The security apparatus of claim 21 wherein the barrier extends between the support members and is supported at either end by the respective support member. 23. The security apparatus of any preceding claim wherein each barrier is associated only with a respective currency cassette.

24. The security apparatus of any preceding claim wherein each barrier is hinged and lockable in place, at least when in the first position.

25. The security apparatus of any one of claims 1 to 22 wherein the at least one barrier is formed and arranged to be associated with a pair of adjacent cassettes and to be movable between a first position in which the barrier prevents removal of a said pair of adjacent cassettes in use of the apparatus along their respective removal paths; a second position in which the barrier prevents removal of one cassette of the said pair of adjacent cassettes along its removal path; and a third position in which the barrier prevents removal of the other cassette of the said pair of adjacent cassettes along its removal path, whereby, in use, only one cassette of the said pair of cassettes is removable along its removal path when the barrier is in said second or third position.

26. The security apparatus of claim 25 wherein there are two barriers; one for a topmost pair of cassettes; and the other for a bottom pair of cassettes, in a stack of four cassettes, one above another, to be protected by the said security apparatus. 27. The security apparatus of any one of claims 1 to 22 wherein the barrier or barriers employed extend between the support members and are mounted to the support frame be moveable from their first position to the second position by sliding upwards and/or downwards. 28. The security apparatus of claim 27 wherein the barrier or barriers are moveable from their first position to the second position by sliding upwards and/or downwards in upstanding grooves of the first and second upright support members.

29. The security apparatus of claim 28 wherein the barrier or barriers comprise a generally flat plate and slide up and/or down with opposed edges of the plate mounted in upstanding grooves provided at each of the first and second upright support members.

30. The security apparatus of any one of claims 27 to 29 wherein the barrier or barriers are formed and arranged to cover all or substantially all of the front faces of the cassettes that they are protecting from removal, when the barrier or barriers are in the first position.

31 . The security apparatus of any one of claims 27 to 30 wherein at least two barriers are provided and at least two of the barriers are mounted in grooves so as to pass one behind another.

32. The security apparatus of claim 31 wherein an upstanding groove of each of the first and second upright support members is wide enough to accommodate the edges of the at least two barriers, when one barrier passes behind the other.

33. The security apparatus of claim 31 wherein more than one upstanding groove is provided in each of the first and second upright support members to allow one barrier to pass behind the other.

34. The security apparatus of any one of claims 27 to 33 wherein a sliding barrier is provided for each currency cassette in a stack of cassettes mounted one above another in an ATM 35. The security apparatus of any one of claims 27 to 33 wherein a stack of four currency cassettes, mounted one above the other in the cabinet of an ATM is protected by the apparatus in use and the apparatus comprises three sliding barriers;

wherein two of the barriers prevent removal of a respective cassette when in their first position and the third barrier is associated with two of the cassettes and prevents their removal when in a first position.

36. The security apparatus of any one of claims 27 to 33 wherein a stack of five currency cassettes, mounted one above the other in the cabinet of an ATM is protected by the apparatus in use and the apparatus comprises four sliding barriers;

wherein two of the barriers prevent removal of a respective cassette when in their first position; and the third and fourth barriers are each associated with two adjacent cassettes and prevent removal of either of them when in a first position.

37. The security apparatus of any one of claims 28 to 36 wherein the barrier or barriers are mounted in their grooves by suspending each barrier from at least one constant force spring fixed at one end to a point in the respective groove and connected to the barrier via a bobbin which runs up and down the groove as the barrier is moved up or down. 38. The security apparatus of claim 37 wherein the bobbin has pins extending axially and running up and down channels provided in the front and rear facing inside faces of the groove.

39. A security apparatus for an ATM, the ATM comprising a safe that contains a note dispenser including a plurality of currency cassettes in a cabinet, wherein the currency cassettes are each removable from the cabinet along a respective removal path;

the security apparatus comprising:

a support frame securable to an ATM or a floor inside the safe of the ATM and comprising first and second upright support members positioned to either side of the removal paths of the currency cassettes in use; and

at least two sliding barriers each sliding barrier being associated with at least one currency cassette and supported between the upright support members;

wherein each sliding barrier is slidably moveable upwards or downwards, either in front of or behind the other sliding barrier of the at least two sliding barriers, between a first position preventing removal of an associated currency cassette along its respective removal path, and a second position permitting removal of the associated currency cassette.

40. The security apparatus of claim 39 wherein the barriers are moveable from their first position to the second position by sliding upwards and/or downwards in upstanding grooves of the first and second upright support members. 41 . The security apparatus of claim 40 wherein the barriers each comprise a generally flat plate and slide up and/or down with opposed edges of the plate mounted in upstanding grooves provided at each of the first and second upright support members. 42. The security apparatus of any one of claims 39 to 41 wherein the barriers are formed and arranged to cover all or substantially all of the front faces of the cassettes that they are protecting from removal, when the barriers are in the first position.

43. The security apparatus of any one of claims 40 to 42 wherein an upstanding groove of each of the first and second upright support members is wide enough to accommodate the edges of the at least two barriers, when one barrier passes behind the other.

44. The security apparatus of any one of claims 40 to 42 wherein more than one upstanding groove is provided in each of the first and second upright support members to allow one barrier to pass behind the other. 45. The security apparatus of any one of claims 39 to 44 wherein a sliding barrier is provided for each currency cassette in a stack of cassettes mounted one above another in an ATM

46. The security apparatus of any one of claims 39 to 44 wherein a stack of four currency cassettes, mounted one above the other in the cabinet of an ATM is protected by the apparatus in use and the apparatus comprises three sliding barriers;

wherein two of the barriers prevent removal of a respective cassette when in their first position and the third barrier is associated with two of the cassettes and prevents their removal when in a first position.

47. The security apparatus of any one of claims 39 to 44 wherein a stack of five currency cassettes, mounted one above the other in the cabinet of an ATM is protected by the apparatus in use and the apparatus comprises four sliding barriers;

wherein two of the barriers prevent removal of a respective cassette when in their first position; and the third and fourth barriers are each associated with two adjacent cassettes and prevent removal of either of them when in a first position.

48. The security apparatus of any one of claims 40 to 47 wherein the barrier or barriers are mounted in their grooves by suspending each barrier from at least one constant force spring fixed at one end to a point in the respective groove and connected to the barrier via a bobbin which runs up and down the groove as the barrier is moved up or down.

49. The security apparatus of claim 48 wherein the bobbin has pins extending axially and running up and down channels provided in the front and rear facing inside faces of the groove.

50. The security apparatus of any one of claims 40 to 49 where the support frame is fixed inside the safe of an ATM in use.

51 . The security apparatus of claim 50 wherein the support frame is rotationally attached to a fixing inside the safe.

52. An ATM comprising the security apparatus of any one of claims 1 to 51 .

Description:
Security Apparatus for ATM

Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to security apparatus for use with an automatic teller machine (ATM).

Background to the Invention

An ATM is an Automated Teller Machine, an automated system that transports currency notes from currency cassettes (which are housed within a secure safe) to a customer via a dispensing slot.

A typical ATM includes a safe that houses a note dispensing mechanism including a cabinet containing currency cassettes, generally one stacked above another. The note dispensing mechanism transports the currency from the currency cassettes within the safe out to the dispensing slot. The dispensing slot is fitted to a fascia of the machine which normally includes a card reader slot, screen for displaying information/instructions, control buttons and a slot for dispensing receipts.

The currency cassettes in an ATM require replenishment and the note dispenser requires servicing and repair. A door on the safe allows access to the currency cassettes, which can be withdrawn from the cabinet. In a service mode, the cabinet can be slid out of the safe to allow all round access to the note dispenser mechanisms and to the rear of the fascia.

The currency in an ATM is vulnerable to attack when the safe door is open and even more so when the cabinet containing the currency cassettes is outside the safe.

GB2363426 describes a security apparatus for preventing the removal of currency cassettes from an ATM, the apparatus including mounting means, and a plurality of locking bars that can be secured in locked positions on the mounting means. In this apparatus each locking bar corresponds to a single cassette and when in the locked position, a locking bar blocks the removal path of only its corresponding cassette, thereby preventing the cassette from being slid out of the housing.

In GB2456586 the applicant for the present application describes an alternative apparatus where a barrier is employed to block the removal of two adjacent currency cassettes, in a stack. The barrier is moveable to allow either one of the adjacent cassettes to be removed whilst the other is kept secured.

However, there remains the need to provide improved security when an ATM is being replenished, serviced or repaired, especially when it is necessary to slide out the cabinet from the safe, and currency cassettes may be vulnerable to attack

Description of the Invention

According to a first aspect, the present invention provides a security apparatus for an automatic teller machine (ATM), the ATM comprising a safe that contains a note dispenser including a plurality of currency cassettes in a cabinet, wherein the currency cassettes are each removable from the cabinet along a respective removal path and the cabinet is slidably moveable from the safe ;

the security apparatus comprising:

a support frame securable to an ATM and moveable with the cabinet of the note dispenser, into and out of the safe, and comprising first and second upright support members positioned to either side of the removal paths of the currency cassettes in use; and

at least one barrier, each barrier associated with at least one currency cassette and supported between the upright support members;

wherein the barrier is moveable between a first position preventing removal of the associated currency cassette, along its respective removal path, and a second position permitting removal of the currency cassette. A plurality of barriers may be provided, each associated with at least one currency cassette.

The support frame and barrier(s) of the security apparatus move with the cabinet and its associated currency cassettes when it is withdrawn from the safe. This means that a barrier can remain in use, to prevent unauthorised removal of a currency cassette from the cabinet, even when the note dispenser or at least the cabinet containing currency cassettes is out of the safe, for servicing or repair purposes.

In a typical ATM the currency cassettes are stacked one above the other in the cabinet and are removable from the cabinet by sliding them out along a horizontal or generally horizontal removal path, in the same direction or general direction as the sliding movement of the cabinet out of the safe. In such arrangements the first and second support members of the support frame are located in use to either side of the front, currency cassette removal end, of the cabinet.

The support frame may include at least one generally horizontally disposed further support member connecting to the first and second support members. For example the support frame may include two horizontally disposed further support members one located above and the other located below a stack of currency cassettes at the front end of the cabinet.

The support frame moves with the cabinet. Conveniently the support frame may be secured to the cabinet, for example by means of welding or fastenings, such as bolts or screws, that may be of the various secure types (difficult to remove) employed in security apparatus. However, the cabinet of a typical ATM may not be regarded as sufficiently robust in construction to securely and reliably mount (support) a strong support frame and associated barriers. In addition such an arrangement may not resist determined attack using tools. For example sides of the cabinet may be of relatively thin sheet steel material not sufficient to securely support a relatively heavy security apparatus.

For at least these reasons various forms of more secure mounting of the support frame to another part or parts of the ATM may be employed. These may be in addition to, or as an alternative to, fixing to the cabinet itself. Some fixing to the cabinet is useful in aiding accurate alignment of the apparatus with the currency cassettes and their removal paths. Thus the support frame may be provided with at least one securing member, to secure the support frame to a part of the ATM other than the cabinet, in use. For example in a typical design of ATM, the cabinet and other parts of the dispensing mechanism attached to the cabinet, slide out of the ATM safe on a telescopic sliding rail mechanism. Typically a pair of fixed rails mounted to either side and towards the top of the safe each have a sliding rail or rails running along them and fixed to a respective side of the cabinet, towards, or at, its top edges. The cabinet is suspended from the telescopic sliding rail mechanism. The sliding rails provide a convenient strong location for fixing securing members of the support frame that attach to the first and second upright support members.

The securing members of the support frame may conveniently take the form of plates one to each side of the cabinet, each plate fixing to the respective sliding rail and the respective upright support member. This arrangement suspends the support frame from the sliding rails. Additional strength and security may be provided by the provision of tie plates, each tie plate fixed to a respective first or second upright support member and running from the support member along the side of the cabinet. The tie plate may be fitted towards or at the bottom of the cabinet side. The tie plate may be fixed by means of welding or fastenings, such as bolts or screws to the cabinet side. For extra security a tie plate may extend to the back of the cabinet and around the back edge. This provides the tie plate with a 'hook' around the back edge of the cabinet, to aid in resisting attempts to force the support frame away from the front of the cabinet.

In the event that the telescopic sliding rail mechanism provided on a particular model of ATM was regarded as insufficient to properly support the security apparatus, then additional rail mechanisms may be fitted, for example as part of a retro-fit of the security device to an existing ATM. An additional pair of rail mechanisms may be fixed alongside existing rails. Additionally or alternatively an additional pair of rail mechanisms may be mounted to either side and towards or at the bottom of the safe. The sliding rails of these mechanisms are attached towards or at the bottom of the sides of the cabinet. Where sliding rails are provided towards or at the bottom of the cabinet, to either side, they may be secured to a plate running along underneath the cabinet to provide a stronger structure than where the sliding rails attach only to the cabinet sides and the fixed rails. The plate may extend to underneath most, substantially all or even all of the underside of the cabinet i.e. the plate may take the form of a tray underneath the cabinet.

Additional sliding rail mechanisms could also be mounted at some intermediate point between the top and bottom of the safe. As a yet further alternative a sliding rail mechanism or mechanisms may be provided underneath the cabinet and used to support the first and second upright support members. The first and second upright support members may be secured to the sliding rails of any telescopic sliding rail mechanism provided. Any telescopic sliding rail mechanism provided may act to support the additional weight of the cabinet and security apparatus combination, especially when the cabinet is out of the safe. An additional or alternative means of supporting the weight of cabinet and associated security apparatus can be by providing a pivoting telescopic support. The pivoting telescopic support includes a support base, for example a metal plate, fitted inside at the bottom of the safe in use. This may be fitted to the ATM safe or to the floor beneath the ATM safe. The support base mounts a pivoting telescopic sliding rail mechanism. The mechanism includes a pair of pivoting rails, each mounted at a pivot end to the support base at either side of the front of the cabinet. The pivoting rails have sliding rails that run along them. In use, when the cabinet is inside the safe the pivoting rails and associated sliding rails are upstanding on the pivot ends. To slide the cabinet out of the safe the pivoting rails are rotated forwards, out of the safe and to a horizontal or generally horizontal position. As the cabinet is withdrawn from the safe it is supported on the sliding rails of the pivoting telescopic sliding rail mechanism, in addition to support that may be provided from other means e.g. a conventional sliding rail mechanism from which the cabinet is suspended. The pivoting rails may be lockable in the upright position to provide additional security and there may be one or more transverse bracing members running between them. When the pivoting rails are in the upstanding position the bracing member is in front of the cabinet and the first and second upright support members and associated barriers, providing yet more security against attack. In a convenient arrangement the cabinet and support frame of the security apparatus of the invention is mounted to a carriage that supports the cabinet and support frame. The cabinet sits on the carriage that is slidably moveable from the safe. The carriage may have a telescopic sliding rail system to support it, carrying the cabinet and the support frame with it, into and out of the safe. The carriage may take the form of a tray. The tray may have at least an upturned edge portions and/or corner portion to securely locate the cabinet and the support frame of the security apparatus. Conveniently the tray has upturned corner portions at each corner. The tray may have all its edges and corners upturned to surround the bottom of the cabinet with its edges. Alternatively the carriage may be provided as a support for the support frame of the security apparatus, with the cabinet being supported by other means, for example a conventional sliding telescopic rail arrangement fitted towards the top of the safe.

The security apparatus has at least one barrier associated with at least one currency cassette and supported between the upright support members. The at least one barrier may be supported by both the support members. The barrier may extend between the support members being supported at either end by the respective support member.

The barriers may take many different forms. All the cassettes in a cabinet may be protected by barriers. In some cases one or more cassettes may not be protected from removal by a barrier. For example ATMs may include a cassette for notes rejected by the dispenser mechanism. Such a "purge bin" may be unlikely to hold large quantities of notes. Therefore it may be selected to be left unprotected by a barrier, if desired, to reduce mechanical complexity.

Each cassette to be protected by a barrier may be provided with its own respective barrier. A barrier is lockable in place, at least when in the first position. A barrier may be hinged. The barrier may be in the form of a hinged plate or door. The hinged plates can be unlocked and moved to the second position (swung out of the way) to allow removal of the respective cassette from the cabinet. Hinging may be to the side (mounted to one of the upright support members) or to the bottom or top of the hinged plate or door. Such arrangements allow selective unlocking of barriers, even when the cabinet is out of the safe of the ATM. Thus only one barrier may be unlocked at a time if desired. For example the barriers may be locked by electronically controlled locks in an interlocking arrangement that only allows one barrier to be unlocked at a time, at least in a normal replenishment or a normal service mode of use of the ATM. Other barrier arrangements, especially those that allow selective locking/unlocking of the barriers may be employed. For example the barrier arrangements that operate in a manner akin to that described in the applicant's own GB245686, which is fully incorporated by reference herein. Thus the at least one barrier may be formed and arranged to be associated with a pair of adjacent cassettes and to be movable between a first position in which the barrier prevents removal of the said pair of adjacent cassettes in use of the apparatus along their respective removal paths; a second position in which the barrier prevents removal of one cassette of the said pair of adjacent cassettes along its removal path; and a third position in which the barrier prevents removal of the other cassette of the said pair of adjacent cassettes along its removal path, whereby, in use, only one cassette of the said pair of cassettes is removable along its removal path when the barrier is in said second or third position. Such an arrangement is described in more detail hereafter and with reference to a specific embodiment.

Thus for example, where four cassettes are to be protected and are provided one above another in a cabinet, there may be two barriers; one for the topmost pair of cassettes; and the other for the bottom pair of cassettes in the stack. As the security device provides a support frame comprising first and second upright support members positioned to either side of the removal paths of the currency cassettes, the barrier or barriers employed may extend between the support members and be conveniently mounted to the support frame be moveable from their first position to the second position by sliding upwards and/or downwards, for example in upstanding grooves of the upright support members.

For strength and security the barrier may comprise a generally flat plate and may slide up and/or down with opposed edges of the plate mounted in upstanding grooves provided at each upright support member (either in the support member or in a groove member attached to it).

Sliding barriers may be lockable in each position where they prevent removal of a cassette along its respective removal path. Advantageously sliding barriers are provided that cover all or substantially all (say at least 70 % or at least 80 % or even at least 95%) of the front faces of the cassettes that they are protecting from removal. A barrier may cover all or substantially all of the front face of a single cassette. Alternatively a barrier may cover more than the front face of one cassette, for example one and a half cassette front faces, or, for further example, two cassette front faces.

The sliding barriers may be mounted in grooves so as to pass one behind another. For example an upstanding groove of a support member may be wide enough to accommodate the edges of two barriers, one passing behind the other. Alternatively more than one upstanding groove may be provided in an upright support member. For example two upstanding grooves one closer to the cassettes than the other. Each groove and its counterpart on the other upright support member may carry the edge of a barrier, allowing one barrier to pass behind another.

Thus for example a sliding barrier may be provided for each cassette in a stack with each sliding barrier being able to slide behind or in front of an adjacent barrier in the stack, to allow removal of a cassette. In a convenient arrangement for use in protecting a stack of four cassettes, one above the other, three sliding barriers are provided. Two of the barriers prevent removal of a respective cassette when in their first position and the third barrier is associated with two of the cassettes and prevents their removal when in a first position. In a closed position where no removal of the cassettes is permitted, a top barrier protects the topmost cassette in the stack, a middle barrier protects the second and third cassettes in the stack and a bottom barrier protects the fourth (bottom) barrier in the stack. The top and bottom barriers can slide behind or, alternatively, in front of the middle barrier to allow removal of their respective cassettes. The middle barrier may slide up to allow access to the third cassette or down to allow access to the second cassette in the stack. Appropriate locking devices, with interlock, can be provided so as to only allow one cassette to be removed at a time. The three sliding barriers may cover all or substantially all of the front faces of the cassettes that they are protecting from removal. Two barriers cover a respective cassette and the third barrier covers two cassette faces, when in the first (closed) positions. In this arrangement the barriers can comprise generally flat plates that each covers substantially all of their respective cassettes, when in the first position. The barrier that covers the second and third cassettes in the stack moves up to a second position allowing the third cassette to be removed and down to a third position to allow the second cassette to be removed. The third position constitutes the second position (for cassette removal) as far as the second cassette is concerned.

A similarly convenient arrangement may be provided for use in protecting five cassettes, one above the other. Four sliding barriers are provided. Two of the barriers prevent removal of a respective cassette when in their first position; and the third and fourth barriers are each associated with two adjacent cassettes and prevent removal of either of them when in a first position. In a closed position where no removal of the cassettes is permitted, a top barrier protects the topmost cassette in the stack, an upper middle barrier protects the second and third cassettes in the stack a lower middle barrier protects the third and fourth cassettes in the stack and a bottom barrier protects the fifth (bottom) barrier in the stack i.e. the upper and lower middle barriers both protect the third cassette, each covering a part of its front face.

From the closed position, the top and bottom barriers can slide behind or, alternatively, in front of, the upper or lower middle barrier to allow removal of their respective cassettes. The upper middle barrier may slide up or down to allow access to the third cassette or down to allow access to the second cassette in the stack. The lower middle barrier may slide up or down to allow access to the third cassette in the stack or up to allow access to the forth cassette i.e. access to the third cassette requires movement from the first position of both upper and lower middle barriers. The four sliding barriers may cover all or substantially all of the front faces of the five cassettes that they are protecting from removal. Two barriers cover a respective cassette and the third and fourth barriers each cover one and a part (typically a half) of the third cassette in the stack. Appropriate locking devices, with interlock, can be provided so as to only allow one cassette to be removed at a time.

Sliding barriers may conveniently be mounted in their grooves by suspending them from at least one constant force spring (typically a roll of metal ribbon) fixed at one end to a point in the respective groove and connected to the barrier via a bobbin which runs up and down the groove as the barrier is moved up or down. Each edge of the barrier may be mounted in its respective groove by suspending from at least one constant force spring.

The roll of metal ribbon unwinds as the barrier is moved away from the fixed end and rewinds as the barrier is moved towards the fixed end. The bobbin may have pins extending axially and running up and down channels provided (e.g. machined) in the front and rear facing inside faces of the groove as shown in an embodiment described hereafter. The use of such pins can provide additional security as they can make prising a barrier out of its groove, and/or forcing apart the first and second upright support members, more difficult. The sliding barrier may be moved up and down easily, supported on the constant force spring and will tend to stay where it is put by an operator.

The barriers may be locked in position by means of a locking bolt, fixing into the support member and releasable when an electromechanical lock is operated to move the bolt or allow the bolt to be moved as described further hereafter and with reference to an embodiment.

Whilst the arrangements of sliding barriers are described above with respect to a security apparatus for an ATM where the support frame is movable with the cabinet of the note dispenser, the sliding barrier arrangement represents a further aspect of the invention that may be employed where the support frame or structure is fixed with respect to the movement of the cabinet into or out of the ATM. Thus according to a second aspect the present invention provides a security apparatus for an automatic teller machine (ATM), the ATM comprising a safe that contains a note dispenser including a plurality of currency cassettes in a cabinet, wherein the currency cassettes are each removable from the cabinet along a respective removal path;

the security apparatus comprising:

a support frame securable to an ATM or a floor inside the safe of the

ATM and comprising first and second upright support members positioned to either side of the removal paths of the currency cassettes in use; and

at least two sliding barriers each sliding barrier being associated with at least one currency cassette and supported between the upright support members; wherein each sliding barrier is slidably moveable upwards or downwards, either in front of or behind the other sliding barrier of the at least two sliding barriers, between a first position preventing removal of an associated currency cassette along its respective removal path, and a second position permitting removal of the associated currency cassette.

The sliding barrier arrangements may include any or all of the features as described above with respect to security apparatus in accordance with the first aspect of the invention, when it makes use of sliding barriers.

Thus for example the arrangement of three sliding barriers for a stack of four cassettes may be employed. For further example the arrangement of four sliding barriers for a stack of five cassettes may be employed. The sliding barrier arrangements may be employed with a security device according to the first aspect of the invention; where the support frame is moveable with the cabinet of the note dispenser, into and out of the safe.

However, other arrangements are possible. Thus the support frame may be fixed to inside the safe. For example the support frame may include a fixing, such as a base support e.g. a base plate that is secured to the floor or other secure point inside the bottom of the safe. The support frame may be rotationally attached to the fixing. Alternatively the support frame may be detachable from the fixing. Where the support frame is rotationally attached to the fixing it may be arranged for rotation about an upright axis so that is can be swung out of the way, to one side of, the path taken by the cabinet when it is withdrawn from the safe for maintenance.

The fixing may be a base support for one of the first and second upright support members to which it is rotationally fixed at its bottom end. Alternatively an upright support member may be hinged to a fixed post. These rotating arrangements allow the support frame and its associated barriers to be swung out of the way when the cabinet is being withdrawn from the safe for maintenance. The rotation may be prevented by a locking mechanism. Whilst such an arrangement does not provide barrier protection to the cassettes when the cabinet is withdrawn from the safe, it does do so when the cabinet is held within the safe. For normal replenishment of the cassettes with currency, the rotation of the support frame remains locked, preventing withdrawal of the cabinet, but allowing the selective withdrawal of any one cassette whilst the others remain blocked by a barrier.

The present invention also provides an ATM fitted with one of the security devices described herein. Brief Description of the Drawings

Figures 1 a to 1c show prior art ATM machines;

Figures 2a to 2c show ATM machines fitted with security devices;

Figures 3a to 3e show ATM machines fitted with security devices;

Figures 4a to 4g show retails of security devices;

Figures 5a and 5b show ATM machines fitted with security devices;

Figures 6a and 6b show ATM machines fitted with security devices;

Figures 7a and 7b show ATM machines fitted with security devices;

Figures 8a and 8b show details of locking arrangements for ATM machines fitted with security devices;

Figures 9a and 9b show ATM machines fitted with security devices; and

Figures 10a to 10f show operation of a security device for an ATM including five currency cassettes.

Description of Some Preferred Embodiments

Figures 1 a and 1 b show, in schematic front elevation and perspective views, a prior art safe 1 of an ATM. The safe 1 will connect to a fascia (not shown) which dispenses currency notes supplied via a slot in the rear of the safe in the usual fashion. The safe 1 has a door 2 which is shown open in these views.

A note dispenser 4 sits inside safe 1 (figure 1 a) and includes a cabinet 6 that has four currency cassettes 8 stacked one above the other. These contain notes for dispensing through the rear of the safe by a dispensing mechanism (not shown), in use. The currency cassettes are removable from the cabinet by sliding out along a removal path, in the direction suggested by arrow X in figure 1 b or figure 1 c. A further removable cassette 9, a purge cassette is located at the top of the stack of cassettes 8. The purge cassette 9 receives damaged or folded noted rejected by the dispensing mechanism.

The cabinet 6 and associated dispensing equipment is slidably moveable from the safe 1 to a service position as depicted in figure 1 b. The cabinet 6 is slid out in the direction suggested by arrow X. This sliding movement is enabled by a telescopic sliding rail system 10 that includes two fixed rails 12 attached to the inside roof of the safe 1 and two sliding rails 14 each attached to a top edge of cabinet 6 and running along its respective fixed rail 12.

When the cabinet 6 is inside the safe 1 , as depicted in figure 1 a, the currency cassettes 8 are protected from unauthorised removal along their removal paths by barriers 16, which take the form of plates each blocking the removal path of two of the four cassettes 8. The barriers are lockable in the position shown in figure 1 a to fixed post 18. When access to, or removal of, a currency cassette 8 is required the appropriate barrier 16 is unlocked and slid upwards or downwards (suggested by double headed arrow Y) and locked in its new position to cover one of the currency cassettes 8 whilst leaving the adjacent cassette unblocked and available to access and/or remove. To allow the cabinet 6 to move to the service position shown in figure 1 b, barriers 16 can be unlocked and rotated out of the way to the position shown in figure 1 b. In the service position access to inside the safe and to all around the note dispenser is available. A further example of a prior art ATM arrangement is also shown in figure 1 c. In this example cabinet 6 is inside the safe 1 and one of the currency cassettes 8 has been withdrawn for replenishment by sliding out from the cabinet along its removal path (direction X). The example of figure 1 c does not have a security device in the form of barriers blocking removal of cassettes. Thus the cassettes are vulnerable to attack both when inside the safe as shown and also when outside in a service position.

Thus the prior art barrier systems such as shown in figure 1 a act to resist unauthorised removal of currency cassettes and can allow removal of only one barrier protected cassette at a time, improving security of the ATM, when the safe door is open for access but not when the cabinet is in the service position of figure 1 b. Figures 2a and 2b show perspective views of an ATM safe 1 including a security apparatus of the invention. In figure 2a a perspective view similar to that of figure 1 b is shown. Safe 1 has its door 2 open and the note dispenser 4 has been slid out of the safe (arrow X) to a service position. Mounted to the front of the cabinet 6 is a support frame 20 of the security apparatus. The support frame may be fixed to the sides of cabinet 6. However stronger attachment of the support frame to the ATM components may be desired or required. This is depicted in figure 2b as discussed below.

The support frame 20 includes upright support members 22 and 24 to either side of the front of the cabinet 6 (to either side of the removal paths of cassettes 8). Horizontally disposed further support members 26 running between the upright support members 22, 24 at their top and bottom ends provide a stronger frame. Two barriers 16 are slidably mounted in grooves of the upright support members 22, 24 and are lockable in selected positions using shot bolt electromechanical locks 27. Other locking devices may be employed, such as more compact miniature piezo locks as described hereafter with respect to the arrangement shown in figure 4b.

As suggested by double headed arrow Y the barriers 16 may be moved upwards or downwards from the positions shown, where each barrier blocks the removal of two currency cassettes 8. As with the apparatus of figure 1 a each of the barriers 16 may be moved to block the removal of one cassette 8 whilst allowing the removal of an adjacent cassette 8 in the direction X. Thus the apparatus depicted in figures 2 acts to resist unauthorised removal of currency cassettes and can allow removal of only one barrier protected cassette at a time, even when the cabinet 6 is moved out of safe 1 for service mode operations.

Figure 2b shows an arrangement as in figure 2a, except the safe 1 is not shown and the view is from the rear of cabinet 6. The fixed rails 12 that are fitted to the safe are shown in this view. The cabinet has been moved in direction X to the extent allowed by movement of the sliding rails 14 along fixed rails 12. Upright support member 24 is in view, upright support member 22 is hidden, but it will be understood to have similar fittings to those shown for support member 24.

Upright support member 24 of support frame 20 is fixed to the cabinet by flange and screw or bolt fixings 28. A securing member 30, in the form of a metal plate is fixed at points 32 to sliding rail 14. The securing member plate 30 attaches by a flange and screw or bolt fixing 34 to upright support member 24. This arrangement gives a compact means of suspending the weight of support frame 20 and associated barriers from the rails 14. The plates 30 give strength without adding significant width to the cabinet.

Also shown in this example is a tie plate 36 running along the side of cabinet 6 to the rear, where a flange 38 turns round the corner of the cabinet. The tie plate 36 is secured to the bottom end of the upright support member 24 by a flange and screw or bolt fixing 40. The optional tie plates 36 further secure the support frame 20 to the cabinet. In some examples fixings 28 to the cabinet may not be required, especially where both securing members and tie plates are employed.

Figure 2c shows the arrangement of figure 2a in schematic front elevation but with the cabinet 6 moved to inside the safe 1. As with the service position shown in figure 2a the currency cassettes 8 are blocked from removal by barriers 16, unless a barrier is unlocked and slid to a new position that allows removal of a selected cassette.

Figure 3a shows an arrangement similar to that of figure 2c except that the barriers, provided to slide up and down in grooves of upright support members 22 and 24, are different. In this example there are three barriers, 42, 44 and 46 provided. First and third barriers 42 and 46 cover substantially the entire front face of the respective currency cassette whose removal path they are blocking. Middle barrier 44 is of the order of twice the area of each barrier 42 or 46; and covers substantially the entire front face of two currency cassettes, the second and third down from the top of the stack of four currency cassettes.

The barriers 42, 44 and 46 may each be slid up and down, when unlocked, as suggested by double headed arrow Y. To allow this movement the barriers are able to pass one behind the other. Figure 3b shows a schematic elevation of the barrier arrangement of figure 3a. The first and third (top and bottom) barriers 42 and 46 each have a small handle 48 and there are corresponding cut outs 50 in the middle barrier 44. Figure 3c shows a cross section plan of figure 3b, along line AA. In figure 3c it can be seen that upright support members 22 and 24 of the support frame have upstanding grooves 52, 54 which accept the outer edges of the barriers and allow them to pass one behind the other. In the figure barrier 46 is shown to be forward of barrier 44. The opposite arrangement is possible. Furthermore separate grooves may be provided to allow one barrier to pass behind another. In this figure lock 27 shows an alternative position for locking devices.

Figures 3d and 3e illustrate the operation of the barriers 42, 44 and 46. In figure 3c first barrier 42 has been unlocked and slid down in direction Y to behind barrier 44, which remains locked, as does barrier 46. Handle 48 of barrier 44 can be seen nesting in corresponding cut out 50 of barrier 44. In this position topmost currency cassette 8 is accessible and may be removed if desired. The other cassettes remain behind locked barriers. A similar approach may be taken to allow access to the bottom cassette in the stack. Barrier 46 may be unlocked and slid upwards (direction Z) to allow access. The barriers may be interlocked to only allow one of barriers 42, 44 and 46 to move from its first, blocking position (figure 3a) at any time.

In figure 3e barrier 44 is unlocked and slid down in direction Y in front of barrier 46, to allow access to the second (from the top) currency cassette 8. Similarly, starting from the fully blocked position of figure 3a, sliding middle barrier 44 upwards (direction Z in figure 3d) will allow access to the third currency cassette.

Figure 4a illustrates in schematic partial perspective view a convenient means of mounting each edge of a barrier 42, in an upright support member 24 (shown in ghost to allow viewing of other parts). In this example the barrier 16 is suspended by means of a constant force spring 56 (a roll of metal ribbon) fixed by screw 58 at one end to a point in the respective groove 54 and connected to the barrier via a bobbin 60 mounted in a slot 61 of the barrier. The bobbin runs up and down the groove 54 as the barrier 42 is moved up or down. The bobbin has extension pins 62, 64 running up and down channels 65a and 65b (see figures 4b, 4c and 4d discussed below) machined in the front and rear of the groove 54. The sliding barrier may be moved up and down easily, supported on the constant force spring and will tend to stay where it is left by an operator. A similar arrangement is provided at the opposite edge of barrier 42 (not shown, apart from slot 61 for mounting the bobbin). In the position shown the barrier 42 may be moved down in direction Y, extending spring 56. Moving upwards in direction Z will return the barrier 42 and spring 56 to the position shown.

Detail partial schematic views figures 4b and 4c illustrate the fitting of bobbing 60 in groove 54. Figure 4b is a perspective view from the front and left of upright support member 24 showing how bobbin 60 carrying constant force spring 56 fits into groove 54. Extension pin 62 runs in front facing channel 65a and extension pin 64 runs in rear facing channel 65b, as can be seen in figure 4c which is a perspective view of the same parts as figure 4b but viewed from behind. Pin 64 has two parts, a central core pin 64a and a circumferential thickening 64b (e.g. a bush) to enable the pin to be held captively within channel 65b by inwards projections of the support 24.

Figure 4d shows in schematic perspective the use of the mounting method in a three barrier 42, 44, 46 arrangement, similar in operation to that of figures 3. The upright support members 22, 24 are in ghost to allow viewing of the bobbins 60, carrying constant force springs 56 each fixed by a screw 58 to the respective upright support member. As can be seen in this figure middle, larger area, barrier 44 is supported at each edge by two constant force springs 56, each carried by a respective bobbin 60. The cross section along line A - A of figure 4e shows the spacing in groove 54 to allow barrier 44 to pass in front of barrier 46.

Partial front elevation figure 4f shows part of the arrangement of figure 4d. This view shows the forward facing channels 65a of the upright support members 22, 24. The rearward facing channels 65b are directly behind (see figures 4b, 4c). The locating of the pins 62 and 64 in the forward and rearward facing channels provides added strength against attempts to prise the upright support members apart, as suggested by double headed arrow Z. The barriers 44 and 46 act as further support members as bobbins 60 are held captively in their respective slots in the barriers 44, 46 and are also held captive by their pins in the channels of the upright support members.

Figure 4g illustrates a locking mechanism for the arrangement of figure 4a, viewed in elevation. Bobbin 60 has a spring loaded bolt in the form of a spring loaded plate 66 mounted for rotation about its centre axis. As illustrated the end 67 of the plate 66 is urged by its spring loading to rotate outwards, in the direction of arrow P. Thus the end (pawl) 67 slides up and down with barrier 42, pressing outwardly on the left facing inside face of the groove 54. At the position shown in the figure plate end 67 is pressing against spring loaded piston 72 of miniature piezo lock 70. The piston 72 is spring loaded to resist motion in the direction of arrow P. As long as lock 70 remains energised the piston 72 is locked and will not depress. In this state the end 67 of plate 66 can continue to slide over the piston 72 and on down the groove 54, in direction Y. The piston 72 has a weaker spring loading than the plate 66. Therefore if the piston 72 is not energised, the plate end 67 moves in direction P as it passes over the piston 72 and will jam in the slot 73 that mounts the piston causing locking. Other locking arrangements may be employed to lock barriers and interlocks may be employed as desired.

Schematic perspective views figures 5a and 5b illustrate alternative barrier arrangements that may be used. In figure 5a each cassette that is protected by the security device is protected by its own barrier 16 in the form of a hinged door 74, supported between the upright support members 22, 24. The doors 74 can be unlocked and opened to allow removal of a currency cassette. In this figure the topmost barrier 74 is open and the corresponding cassette has been removed leaving void 76. In figure 5b each cassette that is protected by the security device is protected by its own barrier 16 in the form of a hinged door 74, supported between the upright support members 22, 24. Each hinged door 74 in this figure hinges downwards to allow access to a cassette 8. In schematic elevation figure 6a (cabinet 6 in the safe 1 ) and corresponding schematic perspective view 6b (cabinet 6 out of safe 1 ), optional means for additional support of the cabinet 6 and attached security device are illustrated. In addition to telescopic sliding system 10 with fixed rails 12 and sliding rails 14, additional rail mechanisms may be fitted, for example as part of a retro-fit of the security device to an existing ATM. An additional pair of telescopic sliding rail arrangements 78 is fixed alongside the existing rail system 10 near the top of safe 1 . An additional pair of telescopic sliding rail arrangements 80 is also mounted, in this example, to either side and towards the bottom of the safe 1. As can be seen in figure 6b, when the cabinet is out of the safe, the sliding rails 82, 84 of the additional rail arrangements 78 and 80 support the cabinet. Further additional support may be provided at the bottom of the cabinet 6 by means of a plate running along the underside 88 of the cabinet. Schematic perspective views 7a and 7b illustrate an alternative means of supporting a cabinet 6, support frame 20 and barriers 16; as they are slid into and out of a safe (safe not shown in this view, for clarity). In addition to telescopic sliding rail system 10 the cabinet is provided with a pivoting telescopic support mechanism 90. The support 90 includes a support base 92 that may sit on the floor of an ATM safe. A pivoting telescopic sliding rail mechanism 94 includes a pair of pivoting rails 96 connected at a pivot end 98 to the support base 92 at either side in front of the cabinet 6. The pivoting rails 96 have sliding rails 100 that can run along them, and bracing member 102 connecting between them. In the position shown in figure 7a, when the cabinet 6 is inside and ATM safe, the pivoting rails 96 are upright. When the cabinet 6 is to be removed from a safe the pivoting rails 96 are pulled down to the horizontal (arrow M). The cabinet 6 may then be moved along sliding rail system 10 whilst support is provided by sliding rails 100 underneath at least the support structure 20 as shown in figure 7b where the fully extended sliding rail system 10 and mechanism 90 can be seen.

Figure 8a and magnified detail figure 8b show in perspective view, from the rear, a cabinet 6 an example of a locking mechanism. Lock 104 that may be of an electromechanical shot bolt type can be used to prevent cabinet 6 being advanced out of a safe (direction X). The lock connects to a base plate 106 via pierced flange 108 which accepts a bolt from the lock. The lock 104 is mounted to a lock support plate 110 fixed to the cabinet 6.

Figure 9a shows an alternative means of making use of a support structure 20 and sliding barrier arrangement similar to that shown in figures 3a to 3d. In this case the support structure 20 supporting barriers 42, 44 and 46 is not mounted to move with the cabinet 6 as it is moved using sliding rail system 10 (direction X). Upright support member 22 is hinged for rotation about fixed upright post 1 12, which is mounted a base support 1 14, inside a safe (not shown). In use when the cabinet 6 is inside a safe the sliding barriers 42, 44, 46 operate as described with respect to the arrangement of figures 3a to 3d. When it is desired to move the cabinet in direction X, out of a safe, the support structure 20 and associated barriers 42, 44 and 46 is rotated out of the way as suggested by arrow R, pivoting about the hinge between upright support 22 and fixed upright post 1 12. Figure 9b shows an arrangement where the cabinet 6, support structure 20 and associated barriers 42, 44 and 46 are supported by a carriage 1 15 in the form of a tray 1 16 in this example. The tray 1 16 includes upstanding front corner portions 1 18 and rear edge portion 120, conforming closely to the support structure 20. The carriage 1 15 may be provided with a telescopic sliding rail system such as that illustrated as item 80 in figure 6a. Alternatively a sliding rail system may be supplied underneath the tray 1 16.

As an alternative, where adequate support for the cabinet 6 is provided by other means, such as telescopic sliding rail system 10, 12, 14; then a carriage 1 15 may provide support or substantial support to the support structure 20 only. Similarly other additional support means such as the pivoting telescopic support mechanism 90 of figure 7a, or the additional pair of telescopic sliding rail arrangements 80 of figure 6a may be used to provide support or substantial support to the support structure 20 only. Figures 10a to 10f illustrate in schematic front elevation views the operation of a barrier arrangement similar to that of figures 3 or figures 4, but in use to protect a stack of 5 cassettes 8 in a stack, one above the other.

The closed position is shown in figure 10 where topmost and bottom barriers 42 and 46 cover substantially all of the respective top 8a and bottom 8e cassettes. Upper middle barrier 44a covers substantially all of the second from top cassette 8b and the top half of the third from top (i.e. middle of the stack of five) cassette 8c. The lower middle barrier 44b covers substantially all of the fourth from top cassette 8d and the bottom half of the middle cassette 8c.

This arrangement allows only one of the cassettes 8 to be revealed for removal at a time, by appropriate movements of the sliding barriers.

In figure 10b the top cassette 8a is available for withdrawal as barrier 42 has been lowered in front of barrier 44a. In figure 10c the bottom cassette 8e is available for withdrawal as barrier 46 has been raised behind barrier 44b.

In figure 10d the second from top cassette 8b is available for withdrawal as barrier 44a has been lowered behind barrier 44b.

In figure 10e the fourth from top cassette 8d is available for withdrawal as barrier 44b has been raised in front of barrier 44a. In figure 10f the middle cassette 8c is available for withdrawal as barrier 44a has been raised behind barrier 42 and barrier 44b has been lowered in front of barrier 46.




 
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