A Russian software vendor is offering a security application designed to protect consumers from robberies at automated teller machines.

BPC Banking Technologies' "double PIN" software enables cardholders to create a second PIN; they can use the new one for standard transactions, and the original one can be used in case of robbery.

When someone enters the original PIN, the ATM would enable them to withdraw a small amount and would then display a message explaining why they cannot withdraw any more such as "Card limit exceeded" or "Sorry, the ATM has run out of cash," the Moscow vendor said.

Using the old PIN would also send an alert to the police.

BPC said banks in Latin America and the former Soviet republics have expressed interest in the application. BPC also expects to market it heavily to banks in Asia.