1.1Background of the Study
Automated Teller Machines (ATM) are devices used by bank customers to process account transactions. Typically, a user inserts into the ATM a special plastic card that is encoded with information on a magnetic strip. The strip contains an identification code that is transmitted to the bank’s central computer by modem. To prevent unauthorized transactions, a personal identification number (PIN) must also be used by the user using a keypad. The computer then permits the ATM to complete the transaction; most machines can dispense cash, accept deposits, transfer funds, and provide information on account balances. Banks have formed cooperative, nationwide networks so that a customer of one bank can use an ATM of another for cash access, by extension all commercial bank’s ATM in Nigeria are inter-connected (Okoh, 2010).
Globally, Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) have been adopted and are still being adopted by banks. They offer considerable benefits to both banks and their depositors. The machines can enable depositors to withdraw cash at more convenient times and places than during banking hours at branches. In addition, by automating services that were previously completed manually, ATMs reduce the costs of servicing some depositors of demand. These potential benefits are multiplied when banks share their ATMs, allowing depositor of other banks access their account through a bank’s ATM (Andrews, 2003).
Banks have become the principal deployers of ATMs. Two reason for this are that they want to increase their market share, although due to the prevalence of ATMs, it is not likely to be the primary means by which ATMs increase profitability for most banks, or/and above a certain level of operations, the cost of a single transaction performed at an ATM is potentially less than the cost of a transaction conducted from a teller, as ATMs are capable of handling more transactions per unit of time than are tellers (Laderman, 1990).
In Nigeria the deployment of ATM by banks and its use by bank customers is just gaining ground and has burgeoned in recent times. This has happened especially after the recent consolidation of banks, which has in all probability, made it possible for more banks to afford to deploy ATMS or at least become part of shared networks (Fasan, 2007). The increased deployment of ATMs in the banking sector has made the issue of technology relevance important. ATM services have a history that is less than ten years in Nigeria. At first, they were operated as elitist services designed for those desirous of exclusive services. Cards were rare and the process for obtaining them tortuous.
Presently, the use of ATM cards has been widely promoted. Banks no longer appear to want personal contact with their customers. Some banks have resorted to penalizing the customer as it were, for not possessing an ATM card, by debiting the account of such a customer for withdrawing below a certain amount across the counters. Agboola (2006) reported that although only a bank had an ATM in 1998, by 2004, fourteen of them had acquired the technology.
Agboola (2006), discovered that the adoption of ICT in banks has produced largely positive outcomes such as improved customer services, more accurate records, ensuring convenience in business time, prompt and fair attention, and faster services etc. Also, the banks’ image is improved creating a more competent market. Work has also been made easier, and more interesting, the competitive edge of banks, relationship with customers, and the solution of basic operational and planning problem has been improved. Fananopo (2006) stated that Nigeria’s debit card transaction rose by 93 percent over pervious years owing to aggressive roll out initiatives by Nigerian banks, powered by interswitch network the number of ATM transactions through interswitch network had increased from, 1,065,972 in 2004, to 21,448,615 between January 2005 to March 2012.