With a whopping £228.4 million stolen last year through transfer cons alone, pressure has been put on banks to reduce fraud.
Banks have been called upon to introduce new name-checking technology when people make online payments.
What’s this story about?
The Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) want the six biggest banks to clamp down on transfer scams by introducing name-checking technology.
When making payments online, the new technology will check if the payee name matches up with the actual name registered on the account. If they don’t appear to match, the bank will send alerts to the customers before they send the money across.
This should prevent fraudsters impersonating banks and coercing victims into transferring cash to their account.
Gareth Shaw, head of consumer group Which? says:
"This system, which would cut losses to bank transfer fraud in half overnight, should have been introduced years ago.
"Banks and the regulator must urgently work towards its implementation as customers cannot face further delays while they continue to fall victim to these devastating scams."
What does this mean for you?
If you currently bank with any of the UK’s biggest banks – Bank of Scotland, Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds Bank, Nationwide Building Society, NatWest, Royal Bank of Scotland, Santander UK or Ulster Bank – you can expect to see this technology introduced soon.
Currently, it’s very difficult to reclaim your money back if you’ve sent it to a scammer. With these new rules introduced, you’ll have the chance to stop and think twice before you send the money across.
However, the banks are still yet to introduce these new rules – meaning you’ll have to keep an eye out and stay alert for any potential risks when it comes to transferring your cash.
Our key tips
While this new technology will be good news for consumers, banks are still yet to introduce it.
This means that you still need to be aware of the risk of any potential scams before you send your cash. ACTION Fraud recommend that you:
- Be wary of requests to pay by bank transfer instead of safer methods like credit cards or PayPal
- Listen to your instincts when something feels wrong
- Be suspicious of anybody asking you to move your money to another account
- Never assume a caller is genuine simply because they know details about you
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