#Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands – February 5, 2020 — When the Premier and myself launched the National Security Strategy on 22nd January we talked about “national unity around national security”. A practical example of this was a meeting held with the three Banks on Monday seeking their active support in removing a criminal methodology that has developed in TCI; forcing bank customers to provide access to their bank accounts, through ATM machines, while being held hostage on fear of their life. We needed more than just a Policing response to this.
Therefore, from this evening, Wednesday 5 February, the Banks will be closing their ATM’s on Providenciales from 7pm to 7am. This will include all drive-through’s and those in Bank vestibules. For the moment this closure will not include those in highly visible public places such as the airport and supermarket locations, but we will keep this under review. It will not impact ATM’s on other Islands although we hope the Banks use this opportunity to also look, and if necessary improve, the security around them.
This is not time limited; it is subject to review dependent on a survey and recommendations around the security of individual ATM’s conducted by the Banks. The Banks and Governor’s Office will remain in close touch during this period and we will collectively keep the public informed of changes.
In terms of deposits we have agreed this will not impact mechanical drop boxes it will remove, temporarily, the ability to deposit money through electronic ATM’s between 7pm and 7am.
I am grateful for the Bank’s co-operation on this. I stressed that in making the request I had the support of the Premier, Leader of the Opposition, Police Commissioner and the major employers across the tourist industry. A good example of national unity, and a good example of where small changes in the private sector – in terms of all other changes we are making across the public sector – should make a difference.