Preventing ATM attacks through
robust forensic traceability


Preventing ATM attacks through robust forensic traceability

SmartWater® SmartGel™ provides an easy-to-use and effective means of deterring and, upon activation, identifying ATM thieves.

Each SmartGel bag is placed inside the ATM and contains a sticky, transferable gel that is invisible to the naked eye, but glows SmartWater’s trademarked yellow-green under UV light.

The gel contains a unique forensic fingerprint that can be used to link both criminals and stolen cash back to a specific ATM.

After achieving a 90% reduction in ATM attacks[1] following the rollout of SmatGel bag – the SmartWater® brand is first and foremost, a powerful deterrent.

This is due to the fact that it is the SmartWater brand that deters criminals, as they are aware of the potential consequences to them and that SmartWater retains a 100% conviction rate in Court when used as evidence.

UV Light
Natural Light

In the unlikely event a determined offender attacks an ATM, the SmartWater SmarGel Bag will rupture, covering the cash, offenders and immediate vicinity in unique SmartGel.

Unlike DNA based products, SmartWater’s unique, inorganic fingerprint will withstand the heat of an explosive blast and will remain detectable on skin and hair for weeks, even with frequent washing and cleaning.

In a time of limited police resources, only priority incidents now secure a police response, leaving many robberies and burglaries un-investigated. SmartWater provides irrefutable forensic trace evidence, placing the offender at the crime scene, meaning a much greater chance of conviction.

This means the Client will be a higher priority than a premises not protected by SmartWater because the Police know they are far more likely to catch the culprits – good news for the Police and reassuring for the Client.

Should arrests be made, SmartWater scientists will analyse traces of SmartWater found on suspects and stolen property at no extra cost to the Police and if necessary, attend Court to help secure conviction.

Due to the indiscriminate and crude, destructive nature of these attacks, it is often the retailer, not the ATM operator, that suffers the consequences of these heinous crimes.

ATM attacks often result in:

  • Significant structural damage to the building, leaving stores unable to trade for days, if not weeks.
  • Extensive repair costs and insurance claims.
  • Reduction in footfall and transaction value with customers unable to withdraw cash on-site.

In many cases, entire communities are ‘cut off’ – this is particularly true of rural areas, where ATMs are more of a lifeline for residents and the local economy.

SmartWater SmartGelTM has a proven track record for reducing ATM attacks, and thus preventing these issues.


  • Easy to install - no power supply required.
  • Links criminals and stolen cash back to the scene of crime irrespective of how the ATM is attacked.
  • There isn’t a more robust forensic liquid on the market than SmartWater – will withstand fire, sunlight and humidity.
  • SmartWater were the first forensic marking company to hold Grade A Robustness under British Standards PAS820 – the highest grade achievable
  • SmartWater is the only forensic marking company whose products and services comply with the latest legal Codes of Practice* - products that do not comply risk being refused by the Courts as evidence.
  • Improves chances of Police response.
  • SmartWater has been used to jail thousands of criminals to date and retains a 100% conviction rate in Court.
  • Proven to reduce ATM attacks by up to 90%.

*Forensic Science Regulator Codes of Practice Issue 4.0 – accredited by UKAS (United Kingdom Accreditation Service)

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