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An interbank network, also known as an ATM consortium or ATM network, is a computer network that connects the ATMs of different banks and permits these ATMs to interact with the ATM cards of non-native banks.
While interbank networks provide capabilities for all ATM cards within the same network to use other banks' ATMs that belong to the same network, the services vary. For instance, when a person uses their ATM card at an ATM that does not belong to their bank, the basic services, such as balance inquiries and withdrawals, are usually available. However, special services, such as the purchase of mobile phone airtime, may not be accessible to ATM cardholders of banks other than the ATM cardholders of the acquirer (the bank that owns the ATM). Furthermore, banks may charge a fee to users of cards that do not come from their own bank (in addition to any fees imposed by the bank of the card the person is using).
Interbank networks are convenient because people can access the ATMs of other banks who are members of the network when their own bank's ATM is unavailable. Such is especially convenient for travelers traveling abroad, where multinational interbank networks, like Plus or Cirrus, are usually available.
Around the world
In the Caribbean, the major interbank network is the ATH network. Most banks issue dual ATH and MasterCard/Visa cards, using the ATH network for ATM transactions and MasterCard/Visa for EFTPOS transactions. Some banks (such as BanReservas) issue ATH-only cards which use the ATH network for both ATM and EFTPOS transactions.
In Indonesia, there are various ATM networks. Transfer between accounts is also possible by using these networks, even to an account in a different network; all one needs is the Bank code number for the Bank where the account resides and the account number itself, please see the instruction at each bank to see the details on how to do this.
- ALTO, one of the earliest ATM networks. Presumably named as pun based on the Cirrus interbank network, with ALTO refers to the prefix Alto- that is often used on cloud types, though altocirrus is not officially recognised as a cloud type.
- ATM Bersama
- Link, a network that consists of 4 state owned banks: Bank Mandiri, Bank Rakyat Indonesia, Bank Negara Indonesia, and Bank Tabungan Negara.
- PRIMA, with BCA (Bank Central Asia) as one of its well known members. It also capable of doubling as an EFTPOS (Electronic Funds Transfer at Point of Sale) network by using BCA's own EFTPOS network (Debit BCA).
- Treats Smart Shopping, with BNI-Maybank, as one of its well known members.
In Japan, many Electronic funds transfer interbank networks exist.
- Major network is BANCS (urban bank) and YUCHO (Japan Post Bank)
- Minor network is ACS (local bank), SOCS (trust bank), LONGS (long term bank), SCS (secondary local bank), SINKIN-NETCASH (Shinkin bank), SANCS (credit union), ROCS (Labour Bank), JABANK-NET (Norinchukin Bank,).
Multibanco is the single unified interbank network in Portugal, that links the ATMs of all the Portuguese banks. This network exists since 1985 and is owned by SIBS (Sociedade Interbancária de Serviços). Multibanco is a fully integrated interbank network and offers much more services than the usually found in other countries networks, making that one of its most known characteristics.
Multibanco itself does not only encompass ATMs. It has a full-fledged EFTPOS network, the Multibanco Automatic Payment, and is also a provider of mobile phone and Internet banking services through the TeleMultibanco and MBNet services, respectively. It is also the provider of the Via Verde electronic toll collection service.