Here’s what an ‘anti-Covid’ ATM setup looks like

FNB has announced the rollout of Covid-19 safety protocols and risk measures at its branch network and ATMs to ensure the safety of customers and staff in accordance with government’s new lockdown legislation.

Government has issued a regulatory update requesting that all banks or financial groups that have ATM services, ensure that there are hand sanitisers available and that social distancing protocols be adhered to.

The latest regulations state that all banks and financial institutions must:

  • Ensure that all automated teller machines (ATM) have hand sanitisers for use by the public at each automated teller machine;
  • Take steps to ensure that persons queuing at the automated teller machine maintain a distance of one and a half metres from each other.

In a media briefing on Tuesday (12 January), Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma explained that this change was made as the government was concerned about banking queues becoming ‘super-spreader events’.

“It came to our attention that people queue at ATMs but there is no sanitisation there,” she said.

“The regulation is that every bank or financial institution that has an ATM must ensure that there are sanitisers at the ATM. This is very important because otherwise, the ATMs could become super spreaders.”

“As an essential service, FNB has been closely monitoring the situation to ensure that all our branches and ATMs are equipped with the relevant control measures to ensure the safety of all our customers and staff,” said Lee-Anne van Zyl, chief executive of FNB Points of Presence.

“In addition, FNB aims to constantly stay abreast and review new regulations and technology equipped for the Covid-19 pandemic that supports our Point of Presence network.”

Van Zyl said that FNB’s ATM footprint includes devices at branches and at many outside locations such as petrol stations as well as in retail stores.

The bank currently has 2,135 branch ATMs which it said are fully compliant with the updated regulations and have put key control measures in place.

The measures include regularly sanitising devices situated at branches, as they are very high-volume transactional devices. These sites are equipped with sanitising pedal dispensers as well as the required social distancing practices.

In addition, the bank’s offsite devices are sanitised by custodians, and retail devices are sanitised by the retail stores as part of the protocol.

“ATMs that are based offsite are serviced and sanitised once or twice a week by our respective FNB custodians – such as shopping centres – after every visit with a solution that lasts for 7 days. In addition, our devices are sanitised and deep cleaned on a quarterly basis to ensure hygienic safety and risk measures are adhered to by an external contracted company.”

Van Zyl said that FNB will continue to work closely with government and various stakeholders to ensure that banking sites remain fully compliant in line with the updated safety regulations and that staff and customers adhere to Covid-19 safety protocols for ensured safety.

“While we endeavour to ensure that we are compliant with the health and safety requirements of Covid-19, we also advise our customers to always use sanitisers or to wash their hands post using any devices as an additional safety precaution as our customers and staff safety is of utmost importance,” she said.

Read: South Africa sees spike in Covid-19 deaths as peak hits

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Here’s what an ‘anti-Covid’ ATM setup looks like