Thursday, January 7, 2010

Bank Thieves Foiled by GPS-Spiked Cash

wired.com

Forget exploding dye packs. Three thieves who made off with about $9,000 in cash from an Illinois bank were thwarted by a GPS device inserted in the cash that led authorities straight to their door, according to the Chicago Tribune.

Timothy Rucker, 33, Phillip Griffen, 31, and Brandon Barnes, 25, entered a branch of the TCF Bank on Dec. 30 with their faces concealed and pointed a gun at a teller, demanding cash.

The three made off with a nylon bag full of money. But unknown to them, the bag contained two GPS-tracking devices hidden among the bills.

Signals from the devices led police to the home of one of the suspect’s parents, where the thieves were arrested about an hour after the robbery.

Threat Level was unable to reach the bank to determine the make of the device it used. But it could have been a system such as the one made by 3SI Security in Pennsylvania, a leader in currency protection systems.

The company wouldn’t answer any questions about its security systems. But according to its website, the GPS currency tracker it sells, called Electronic Satellite Pursuit (ESP), has helped recover more than $3.1 million.

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