New year, same scams

13 January 2022 | Opinion

Windhoek • Magreth Mengo
As we enter the new year, we unfortunately still have the problem of dealing with scammers and fraudulent messages.
We would have loved to have left that in 2021, but it seems that it continues to follow us into 2022. Only a week and a half into 2022 and several scams have already been reported to us.
However, we are here to help you to remain vigilant and to stay alert.
The first scam is an email from [email protected] which has an attachment that prompts clients to enter their banking login information. The email states: “the following payment of N$ (amount) has been made to your account on the (date). Please review attachment.”
As a bank, we will never ask you for your login information. That information is already on our system. Always make sure to verify any emails from our bank. You can do this by speaking to your relationship manager or by calling your nearest branch or your customer contact centre at 92860.
The second scam is falsified bank documents. These include confirmation of bank accounts letters and bank guarantees or letters of credit. They might seem legitimate and even if it is, it never hurts to double-check their
Authenticity through the bank before relying on such documents.

We want to make sure that you as our customers #StayAlert.
Here are some tips to follow:
• Look out for things such as spelling mistakes, grammar, font, or contradictions in the content of the document.
• Do not only rely on the email address domain (e.g.“@standardbank.com.na”), to determine the authenticity of the email.
• Secure your personal computer by using adequate licensed anti-virus and firewall software.
• If you have not participated in any contest or are not expecting to receive funds, rather ignore emails that indicate as such. If it seems to good to be true, then it probably is.
• Avoid using public Wi-Fi networks and public computers for banking transactions.
• Do not respond to or click on any links sent via emails, which require you to input your confidential internet banking details.
• When in doubt, contact your relationship manager, the relevant branch or the bank’s Customer Care Centre, before divulging confidential information.
• Standard Bank will never ask clients to divulge their passwords, personal banking details or card details via phone or an email, hence do not fall victim to fraudsters masquerading as bank personnel.
There are always scams this time of year. However, try your best to remain vigilant; you can never be too hyper-vigilant when it comes to your banking. If something seems off, then contact us for peace of mind. Rather be sure, than unsure and sorry.
In circumstances where a customer is of the opinion that they have been a victim to any of these scams, they should at once contact their respective Relationship Manager or branch and provide all the necessary details. This should be followed with opening a criminal case with Nampol, a copy of which should be provided to the bank. Quick actions by the customer increase the possibility of the recovery of the funds, especially if the complaint is filed on the same day. However, such recovery is not always guaranteed.
We continuously update our systems to stay ahead of criminal activities and urge customers to stay vigilant, as we partner in the fight against financial crime.
*Magreth Mengo is Standard Bank’s Head of Marketing and Branding.

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