To prevent becoming the victim of fraudsters, it’s vital to be on guard, especially when using transactional, card-based accounts linked to cheque and savings accounts. Photo: File
To prevent becoming the victim of fraudsters, it’s vital to be on guard, especially when using transactional, card-based accounts linked to cheque and savings accounts. Photo: File

How to spot digital banking fraud

By Staff Reporter Time of article published Jun 8, 2021

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To avoid becoming the victim of fraudsters, it’s vital to be on guard, especially when using transactional, card-based accounts linked to cheque and savings accounts.

Old Mutual chief information officer Vijay Naidoo said: “Scammers are continually finding new ways to gain access to personal banking information and use it to defraud unsuspecting customers. So banks need to continually upgrade their security systems, while consumers need to be informed and alert.

"The more informed you are about the possible risks of digital banking, the more likely you are to reduce the possibility of your personal information being compromised.“

Spotting a suspicious email:

  • It may contain a financial institution's logo, but its email address ends in ‘@gmail.com' or another domain that offers easy access to register addresses. A credible financial service provider would never use an address like this. It will always use its own registered domain name.
  • Look out for emails in your inbox that invite you to click on a link to update information.
  • Be wary of emails that use scare tactics or urge you to respond quickly to avoid an account being closed, hacked or frozen.

“The number one rule is simple: do not open emails that appear suspicious and do not respond to emails that contain threats. Reputable companies like Old Mutual would never send those type of emails. Delete the message, or phone the bank or business (use a number you know or have saved) and check if they sent the mail," Naidoo said.

Vishing

Vishing involves scammers making personal contact by phone or via a pre-recorded message to get you to release personal information.

  • A typical example is a phone call from someone pretending to be working at a bank or company you use and asking you for information to update their records or fix a problem with your account.
  • Usually, the tricksters will ask for login details to fix the problem, or they will ask for a new payment to be made. The safest thing to do is to end the call immediately and phone the customer service line to find out if it was a genuine request.
  • Other approaches pass on “good news” about special offers or unexpected payments coming your way.

Before responding, remember it it likely a made-up story to trick you into sharing personal information. Always call the service provider’s call centre to check if it’s true.

PERSONAL FINANCE

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