Scam call seeks card security number

A Palmerston North couple are warning of a potential new credit card scam after receiving a phone call asking them to provide the security code on the back of their new card to "activate" it.

The woman, who wished to remain anonymous, said she and her husband applied for and received a new ANZ credit card last week, and took it to the bank that same day to put a pin on it and enable internet banking.

Since then, it had remained unused, which is why they were surprised to get a call from someone purporting to be from ANZ on Thursday, telling them they needed to "activate" the new card by giving out the three digit security code on the back.

If they did not activate it, they would miss out on some investment opportunity, she said.

What was particularly concerning to them was how the caller knew they had only recently received a new card, the woman said.

An ANZ spokesman said yesterday they would never contact a cardholder asking for their three-digit security number or PIN.

"This customer did exactly the right thing by refusing to disclose the number and contacting her bank."

While they could not comment on the situation of an individual cardholder or speculate on how fraudsters may have targeted them, criminals are constantly exploring new ways to steal cardholders' funds, he said.

"Card fraud is an ongoing problem facing all banks. However, fraud resulting from reissue or replacement cards is very low.

"We have sophisticated processes which regularly prevent and detect fraudulent activity.

"Victims of genuine fraud are reimbursed for any funds taken by fraudsters."

ANZ actively promoted fraud prevention awareness, including the recent Connect Smart Week, a campaign to help people protect themselves, their businesses and others online.

A Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment spokeswoman said their Consumer Information team has not had any reports about this particular scam, but banking scams that try to trick people into giving out their personal details were "very common".

"We advise consumers to be on their guard. If you receive a phone call or an email purporting to be from your bank, hang up, don't open the email, and notify your bank immediately.

"Never give out your password or PIN number over the phone, in person or in an email.

"Your bank will never ask you for your pin over the phone or by email."

There are other things people can do to protect themselves, including never entering personal details into a website unless satisfied it is genuine, or visit a bank's website by clicking on a link - type in the website address.

Anyone who has had an encounter with a fraudster is asked to report their experience to Scamwatch. Personal details are treated in the strictest confidence.

Manawatu Standard