Call for safe mobile banking as fraud gets out of hand in South Africa

Call for safe mobile banking as fraud gets out of hand in South Africa

As technology improves and develops.,fraudsters and cybercriminals are also improving their illegal techniques and methods to make sure they stay ‘relevant’ in the society they operate in.  Therefore, South Africa’s First National Bank (FNB) has once again made an impassionate plea to its cutomers to be very careful when performing banking operations on their mobile devices.

In the face of mobile banking usage, customers need to make sure that they are aware of the safety measures which will help them not to compromise their personal banking details, FNB said today.

“We call on all customers to be aware of the fraud mechanisms used by fraudsters’ to defraud customers. The first step in the safekeeping of personal banking information is to never disclose a login PIN, user ID, password or One Time PIN (OTP) to anyone,” FNB head of cellphone banking Dione Sankar said in a statement.

FNB said it has provided its customers a choice of mobile banking channels that allow them to perform everyday banking activities at their convenience available 24/7, adding that the choice between FNB mobile banking channels will be dependent on the device used and the needs of the customer. The FNB mobile banking channels are accessed in the following ways: cellphone banking, app banking and banking.

Sankar explained: “Fraudsters continually try new approaches to gain confidential banking information that will allow them access to defraud a customer via Mobile or online banking channels. Avoid falling victim to such scams by being extra vigilant.”

The bank said customers need to be on the watch for the following methods and scams used by fraudsters:

Phising: Customers are tricked into divulging their information via email.

What it looks like:

· An e-mail message or pop-up window that includes official-looking bank logos.
· An e-mail that includes web links to or FNB Online Banking.
· An e-mail posed as a security alert that request personal information.
· An e-mail posed as a rewards statement that request personal information.
· An email that notifies of a payment or deposit into your account followed by a web link for payment verification.

Smishing: Customers are tricked into exposing information via SMS. What it looks like:

· A random SMS sent by a fraudster who is waiting for a response.
· A SMS suggesting that the customers’ details have been compromised and that the bank needs the personal information to stop the fraud.

Vishing: Customers are called and tricked into divulging their information. What will happen:
· A random SMS stating that a bank official will contact you to verify or update your details.
· A fraudster who calls, claiming to be a bank official.
· The latest Vishing trend includes fraudsters claiming to be South African Police Officers. Instead of a sms stating that the customers will be contacted by a bank official, customers are being threatened into providing their personal details or face being arrested.

SIM Swaps: A fraudster contacts the network operator and reassigns the cellphone number to a new SIM in order to gain access to confidential information, e.g. OTP (One Time PIN) SMS.
What will happen:
· A fraudster impersonates the customer and calls the network operator and reports that the SIM is lost or stolen. This will result in a new SIM being activated with the customer’s number. The old SIM will be de-activated. All messages including messages containing personal info will be sent to the fraudster thereafter.
· A fraudster could call, claiming to be from the mobile service provider. They might request that the phone be switched off for maintenance purposes. The customer is advised to urgently contact their service provider if this occurs.


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