Phone scam under Bankers' Association guise

Last updated 15:33 13/02/2013

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People are being urged by the New Zealand Bankers' Association to be on guard against the latest telephone phishing scam.

Scammers claiming to be from the association are phoning members of the public saying they are investigating banks charging excessive fees and offering compensation to affected customers. They then ask people to provide their bank account details so they can "refund" fees.

"This is a scam. Anyone receiving such a call should not provide any personal information," said Association chief executive Kirk Hope.

"This provides a useful reminder to safeguard information relating to your bank accounts, and never to disclose your PIN numbers or account passwords to anyone, including people you trust."

Hope said people should never give out account details over the phone unless they have initiated the call and trust the number they have called is genuine.

The association and its member banks would never ask a customer to disclose their PIN number or account password over the phone, said Hope.

This kind of scam is known as phishing and the fraudsters usually contact people via email or phone. Text messages of this nature are known as smishing.

Phishing scams try to get access to bank account numbers, passwords and credit card numbers so they then have free reign over the victim's  finances and personal identity.

Credible excuses the fraudsters give for wanting the information range from upgrading security, system maintenance, verifying an account, offering a refund for a fee or bill, and even protection from fraud.

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- BusinessDay.co.nz

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