High street bank The Royal Bank of Scotland Group is offering one time ATM access to customers who lose or have their debit cards stolen.

By calling the usual helpline bank customers will be offered a single use security number which will enable them to withdraw up to £300 within three hours of the PIN being handed over. The service will be free over the Christmas period with a £5 fee coming into effect after January 11th. Customers will be asked three security questions in order to access the service.

The system will work by customers pressing any of the six blank (numberless) keys on a RBSG ATM (RBS, Nat West, Ulster Bank and Tesco Personal Finance machines) key pad which will call up the ‘Emergency Cash’ screen and the customer simply needs to key-in the PIN number they were given and follow the on-screen instructions to access their cash.

Paul Geddes, Chief Executive, Consumer Banking at The Royal Bank of Scotland Group, said: “We all know what an inconvenience it is to be stranded without our debit card, especially over the holiday period. With this in mind, we introduced the new Emergency Cash service to provide customers with a lifeline when they have lost their debit card or had it stolen and need urgent access to the funds in their bank account. It’s really simple, secure and completely unique.”