Covid-19 lockdown and the limits it places on movement has created fertile ground for online fraudsters and consumers should be alert before releasing personal information, a leading bank has warned.
FIRST National Bank has seen a significant rise in a new fraud modus operandi targeting unsuspecting online shoppers according to FNB’s Chris Labuschagne.
“The latest modus operandi involves methods such as ‘enumeration’ and ‘account testing’, where online merchant fraudsters use automated scripts or software to attempt transactions or payments. Fortunately, our fraud detection measures have been effective in preventing many of these attempts, and we immediately block merchants for this activity,” he said.
Despite these measures, the bank emphasised the need for consumers to maintain high levels of awareness as fraudsters regularly evolve their methods.
According to Trish Ramdhani, head of fraud at FNB Card, customers need to practise several habits in order to avoid falling prey to online fraudsters, and these include:
– Refrain from clicking on links in e-mails or 3rd party websites when shopping online.
– Avoid disclosing personal information such as passwords and PINs to anyone.
– Check bank statements regularly and thoroughly for any unauthorised transactions/withdrawals.
“We advise consumers to familiarise themselves with the new ways that criminals are using to defraud unsuspecting victims. More importantly, we urge consumers to always protect their personal information and to use any of our banking interfaces to immediately report any suspicious transactions on their bank accounts,” concluded Ramdhani.