BSP Advisory: Avoid Sangla-ATM Scheme

Learn about the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ advisory cautioning ATM cardholders against participating in “sangla-ATM” schemes.

BSP Advisory - Avoid Sangla-ATM Scheme feature

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Editing by Nathaniel Cajuday

  • BSP advises against “sangla-ATM” schemes using ATM cards and PINs as collateral for loans.
  • Cardholders may face financial difficulties due to difficulty monitoring withdrawals by others and the risk of excessive creditor withdrawals.
  • The advisory is part of BSP’s efforts to educate Filipinos about responsible money management, credit, and savings, emphasizing the importance of understanding loan agreements.

In a recent advisory, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) cautioned automated teller machine (ATM) cardholders against engaging in “Sangla-ATM” schemes that involve using their ATM cards and personal identification number (PIN) as collateral for loans.

BSP vs. Sangla-ATM Scheme

The central bank stressed that this practice can result in financial difficulties for cardholders, as it becomes challenging to monitor withdrawals made by others who have access to the card and PIN. Creditors may also withdraw amounts exceeding the cardholders’ debt. 

Sangla-ATM is an informal lending system that utilizes the ATM card as collateral. In this scheme, the lender retains the ATM card or debit card and deducts the loan payment from the borrower’s salary on each payday until the entire amount is fully repaid.

In a statement, the BSP noted that the advisory aligns with their ongoing efforts to educate Filipinos about responsible money management, credit, and savings. 

The borrowers are then encouraged by the monetary agency to comprehend the loan agreement terms and conditions to safeguard themselves against unreasonable demands:

“For information on microfinance, personal, and other small loan facilities, the public is encouraged to directly inquire with banks and other BSP-supervised financial institutions, 1 such as pawnshops, money service businesses, electronic money issuers, and non-stock savings and loan associations.”

Recent BSP News

Last month, the central bank reported that ‌overseas Filipino remittances had reached the lowest level since June 2022. As per their data, both personal and cash remittances have declined, reflecting the challenging economic conditions faced by Filipino workers abroad. The United States remains the top source of remittances, followed by Singapore, Saudi Arabia, and Japan. 


The BSP and the Bankers Association of the Philippines (BAP) also assured the public that the recent collapse of three US-based banks, Silicon Valley Bank, Silvergate Capital Corporation, and Signature Bank, did not have a significant impact on the Philippine banking sector. 

While last March, BSP Governor Felipe Medalla expressed his desire to remove transaction fees on small-value fund transfers in order to promote cashless or digital payments among Filipinos. 


Further, the central bank also implemented new regulations governing the operations of electronic money (e-money) in the country, aimed at enhancing safety and efficiency for users. Under the revised guidelines, electronic money issuers (EMIs) will be categorized into two groups: banks and non-bank financial institutions. Each group will have specific rules and requirements tailored to their respective operations.

This article is published on BitPinas: Avoid Sangla-ATM Scheme, Central Bank Warns

Disclaimer: BitPinas articles and its external content are not financial advice. The team serves to deliver independent, unbiased news to provide information for Philippine-crypto and beyond.

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