Banks invest heavily to ensure their products and services are secure and customers are protected from fraud. They have comprehensive security measures for online banking and ATM and credit card use. For example:
- Transaction monitoring: banks use sophisticated technology to monitor transactions and identify suspicious activity. If they notice an unusually large or irregular purchase, or an overseas transaction, banks may put a stop on the account and contact their customer to check it’s legitimate.
- Encryption: banks encrypt personal data using Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encryption technology, to ensure others can’t read information travelling over the internet between your computer and the bank website.
- Lockouts and automatic time outs: after a number of unsuccessful online banking log in attempts, banks will temporarily lock your accounts. As an additional security measure, your internet banking session will automatically shut down, or time out, after a period of inactivity.
- Security codes: banks provide additional confidence and security when performing certain transactions online in the form of one-time security codes, sent to your mobile phone to confirm the transaction.
Banks encourage customers to be vigilant with keeping their banking products secure and to contact their bank as soon as they suspect fraudulent activity. Some customers can block their credit card using their mobile app if they lose it, or suspect their card has been skimmed.
If a customer contacts their bank about an unauthorised transaction on their account, the bank will open an investigation. As long as the customer was the innocent victim and did not contribute to the fraud, they will be compensated.
Being alert to the latest scams is important for customers to prevent fraud. According to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, online romance scams are one of the leading types of scams in terms of financial loss.
If a bank suspects a customer has been the potential victim of a romance scam, the bank will attempt to contact them to discuss their circumstances and suggest a course of action.
Banks support their customers by providing real-life examples of scams to help them spot if the same thing is happening to them. Banks will also advise customers on the risks of sending money offshore to people you don’t know, and the low likelihood of the money being recovered once the customer realises they have been scammed.
Customers can stay up to date on the latest scams at the ACCC ScamWatch website.
For more tips on keeping your personal and financial information secure while banking, download our Security & Fraud Prevention fact sheet.