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Press Releases

Hong Kong Banking Industry Enhances the Security of ATM Services
Advance Activation of Overseas ATM Cash Withdrawal Capability

To further enhance the security of ATM services across the banking industry, with effect from 1 March 2013, the overseas ATM cash withdrawal capability for all ATM cards (including debit cards and credit cards) issued by Authorized Institutions in Hong Kong will be pre-set as “deactivated” to minimize unauthorized ATM transactions.

To make use of this new security feature, cardholders intending to make cash withdrawals from ATMs overseas (including those in Mainland, Taiwan, Macau and places outside Hong Kong) should activate the overseas cash withdrawal capability in advance through ATMs, online banking, phone banking or bank branches as provided by the relevant card issuing bank and then set the effective and expiry date for the activation period as well as the overseas ATM cash withdrawal limit. Individual banks have started communicating the detailed arrangements to their customers. Cardholders should contact their own card issuing banks for details.

To help the public understand the enhanced security features, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and the Hong Kong Association of Banks (HKAB) will shortly be publicising the details through television and radio and on their websites. 

Deputy Chief Executive of the HKMA, Arthur Yuen, said “We believe that the new control measures on the use of ATM services outside Hong Kong can further strengthen the overall security of ATM services in Hong Kong.  ATM cardholders are advised to pay attention to the operations of the new measures to ensure they can continue to withdraw cash from ATMs outside Hong Kong from 1 March 2013. The HKMA will continue to work with the banking industry to monitor the ATM security development and international trend, and strengthen the security of ATM services where appropriate.”

Chairman of the HKAB, Benjamin Hung, said “The industry has been making good progress with the chip card project to enhance ATM security, with the adoption of the chip-based technology reflective of the collective commitment of the industry to improve the security of ATM services. We will be using different channels to help public understand the operation of the overseas ATM cash withdrawal capability, in accessing reliable and secure ATM services.”

For media enquiries, please contact

Hong Kong Monetary Authority
Yokee Wong, Manager (Communications), at 2878 1213 or
Natalie Wu, Officer (Communications), at 2878 8246

The Hong Kong Association of Banks
Boey Wong, Secretary, at 2521 1169

Last revision date: 25 January 2013
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