THE number of attacks on cash machines has nearly doubled in the last four years, according to research by an ATM operator.

The news comes the day after raiders were videoed smashing a Co-op cash machine in Tang Hall Lane, York, in the early hours of Thursday morning.

Research just published by ATM operator Cardtronics shows that attempts to steal cash from ATMs in the UK have risen from 400 attacks in 2014 to 700 last year.

York Press:

Managing director of Cardtronics, Tim Halford, said: “For the first time, we have proof that the wider damage caused by these attacks is far greater than the direct impact to cash machines or the building they are in.

“ATM attacks are not victimless crimes, which is why we need the Government, police forces, civil society organisations and the ATM industry to take action now to contain the threat of future ATM attacks.”

In Thursday’s incident in York, nearby residents were woken up by a loud band as the gang, wearing balaclavas and tracksuits, attacked the ATM and the shop's shutters at around 3am.

The raid was captured in dramatic video footage which shows sparks flying as some sort of industrial tool is used to attack the cashpoint

One witness said: "It was like something from Crimewatch."

North Yorkshire Police has not revealed if the gang actually got away with cash.

The raiders are said to have made off in an Audi car.

This year alone, The Press has reported on ATM attacks including in Acomb, Strensall and Bishopthorpe.