More Banks Switching from Dye Packs to GPS Tracking Devices to Thwart Robbery

14 Jul 2016

12359952 - thief running out of a bank vault, low-key photo

Criminals have been robbing banks since banks were first established in this country. Over the years, many attempts have been made to prevent robberies. Exploding dye packs have been the most effective prevention method for years, until now. Banks will likely start relying on GPS tracking devices to prevent robberies from occurring.

Recently, three thieves who stole an estimated $9,000 from an Illinois bank were caught, thanks to a GPS tracking device.

The Chicago Tribune reported that the Timothy Rucker, 33, Phillip Griffen, 31 and Brandon Barnes, 25, walked into a TCF Bank on December 30, 2015 and walked out after they successfully robbed the bank – or so they thought.

The nylon bag stuffed with money that the three robbers took has more than an estimated $9,000 in cash in it; the bag was also carrying two GPS tracking devices.

When the bag was stolen, the police were able to track the bag and therefore, they were able to catch the thieves. The signals that one of the GPS devices set off led the police to the home of one of the suspect’s parents. It was at this house were all three thieves were found by police and where they were arrested. The arrest was swift, occurring only about an hour after the thieves walked out of the bank with the cash.

Though Threat Level was not able to confirm what type of GPS device was used, it may have been a system that was made by 3SI Security in Pennsylvania, a leading currency protection system. Though this security company would not comment on any questions they were asked about their security systems, their website indicated that the GPS currency tracker is produces, the Electronic Satellite Pursuit, has been able to successfully recover over $3.1 million.

In 2008, 3SI took over Geotrax Protection, a leading protection agency that developed a GPS tracking system specifically for tracking currency in 2002. Geotrax founders, Richard Fuller and Phillip Grimm, authored a paper in 2006 that stated GPS tracking devices had been deployed in more than 30 bank robberies from November of that same year. According to the company, the system had an impressive recovery rate of 73 percent.

Given the facts about this robbery and how effective GPS tracking devices have been at recovering currency, it is believed that this type of technology is the wave of the future for preventing bank robberies.

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