Cash Machine (ATM)

Business, Legal & Accounting Glossary

Definition: Cash Machine (ATM)



Full Definition of Cash Machine (ATM)


Cash machines are often referred to as ‘cash dispensers’ or ‘hole in the wall machines’. Cash machines are a cross between a cash till and a computer, which enables users to access their bank accounts and carry out transactions such as withdrawing cash.

The first cash machine in the United Kingdom was introduced by Barclays Bank in 1967 outside its Enfield branch. Cash machines can be found in supermarkets, railway stations, motorway service areas and convenience stores.

Customers can usually withdraw cash free of charge using a debit card linked to their current account. But there will be charges if you use a cash machine (ATM) operated by an institution with which your bank does not have a reciprocal arrangement.

Whichever cash machine (ATM) you use, if you draw cash using a credit card you will pay a charge. Security is taken care of by individual users using a Personal Identification Number (PIN) that is known only to them. But there have been odd security question-marks over ATMs with some users claiming ‘phantom withdrawals’.

The main ATM network in the UK is the LINK organisation, which includes all the major banks and building societies in the country.

Typically, the machines can be used to :

  • withdraw cash – typically up to £300, but more for ‘gold card’ users.
  • get an account balance
  • order statements & cheque book
  • Some ATM’s permit you to ‘pay money in’.

The proliferation of ATM machines has provided greater convenience to customers. Consequently, many people never visit their local branch or any bank for that matter. Instead, they manage their accounts by post or use a telephone banking service or online banking service.


Synonyms For Cash Machine (ATM)


ATM, Automated Teller Machine, Hole In The Wall

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Definition Sources


Definitions for Cash Machine (ATM) are sourced/syndicated and enhanced from:

  • A Dictionary of Economics (Oxford Quick Reference)
  • Oxford Dictionary Of Accounting
  • Oxford Dictionary Of Business & Management

This glossary post was last updated: 15th February, 2020 | 26 Views.