In recent months there’s been a lot in the media about bank fraud. As online banking technology and security becomes better the fraudsters are turning to Social Engineering to steal money from innocent people. They have become very good at impersonating bank employees and persuading (often elderly and vulnerable) people to make an ‘Authorised Push Payment’, or ‘APP’.  Basically this is tricking someone into sending them money.

Obviously some people are pretty gullible and perhaps naive when it comes to spotting a convincing and sophisticated criminal fraud, but increasing, savvy and intelligent people are falling victim because the fraudsters have become very good at their ‘craft’.

My point is this: In order to send money to another person you have to know (or be told) very specific details about the Destination Account of that person, the Sort Code, Account Number and of course the Amount.

Unbelievably the banks do NOT check the Account Name during the transfer process. Even if you mistype a digit during the process it’s YOUR fault and the bank will NOT refund the money. This makes it very easy for fraudsters to steal money. The banks must do much more to tighten up the Authorised Push Payment system to stop it being so vulnerable.

Why can’t the banks, when a fraud like this takes place simply trace and return the money to the victim, especially when the bank accounts used are based in the UK?

Unfortunately, it seems that the banks are not great at keeping the current IT systems running, let alone developing and running new ones to combat APP fraud.

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