Nigeria Banks caution customers, say frauds on the rise

Bank scams are increasing as more customers are adopting electronic means of payment since lockdown was introduced in the country to contain COVID-19 spread.

The lending institutions have also been alerting their customers to ensure more caution in transactions and continue to utilise the e-payment channels available to them.

First Bank of Nigeria stated that it recorded over 275,000 new sign-ups to alternative channels covering its Firstmobile; the USSD and First-Online platforms when the lockdown started.

 

In a mail to its customers, it stated, “We observed that scammers are beginning to have sleepless nights over our customers’ accounts.

 

“They have started sending messages on purported ATM card deactivation, due to difference in date of birth.

 

“They even go as far as telling you to dial their fraudulent numbers to activate your card.

 

“As in, they want to defraud you and they still ask you to waste your money on them! Don’t fall for it; it’s a lie!

 

“Let them know that you are not a zombie, let them know smartness is in your DNA. If you get any suspicious message as such, delete it immediately.

 

“Rest assured, FirstBank will never ask for your personal details or ask you to call a personal number.

 

“Also, do not click on any online link asking for your account details such as your BVN, personal information, ATM card number, PIN or OTP.”

 

Access Bank Plc also urged its customers to be vigilant as incidents of fraud were on the rise.

 

It stated, ‘Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic in the country which necessitated the lockdown of first, three major cities, and eventually the entire nation, the bank has observed a worrying increase in reports of fraudsters targeting unsuspecting customers.

 

“This development has become even more worrisome, especially as these people not only disguise themselves as bank representatives, but also use the palliatives from the government as bait to collect customers BVNs and other key banking details.”

 

The Executive Director, Retail Banking, Access Bank Plc, Victor Etuokwu, said “Access Bank is imploring its customers to be wary of any message, demanding their personal or bank details.

 

“Customers must remember that the bank will never ask for their BVN, full card PAN, PIN, mobile app activation code, OTP or password as it is readily available to the Bank via its database.

 

“Any call, email and text message, claiming to be from Access Bank demanding for any of these details is certainly a scam,” he concluded.

 

In an email to its customers, Fidelity Bank said, “Dear customer, it has come to our attention that scammers are utilising the COVID-19 pandemic as an opportunity to defraud the public by impersonating COVID-19 officials alongside some of the following.”

 

While mentioning some of the techniques, it added, “Please do not click on any link or respond to any of such messages; delete immediately!

 

“If or when in doubt, please contact our customer care representatives.” – punch

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