FNB warns of new ‘remote’ scams targeting customers in South Africa

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FNB is warning consumers about “remote access” scams currently targeting its customers in South Africa, urging them to compromise the security of their information and financial credentials.

Giuseppe Virgillito, head of digital banking at FNB, says the modus operandi targets unsuspecting users, especially the elderly, by forcing them to automatically download software remotely onto their devices under the guise that it is of a “security application” that they install for their protection.

In some cases, remote access requests can be obtained via a phone call or text message designed to create panic by offering help in stopping fraudulent transactions in your bank account.

The success of this fraud requires the user’s cooperation to install a remote access application, and unfortunately, some consumers fall for these tricks and end up compromising credentials, he said. .

FNB has stated that a reputable financial institution will never request the following:

  • Request remote access to your device.
  • Ask you to verbally confirm your PIN and passwords for your devices.
  • Ask you to share your banking credentials such as card and CVV number, PINs, OTPS, passwords and usernames
  • Move money between accounts for safekeeping.

“Our top priority is to protect our customers and empower them to protect themselves. We monitor these scams 24/7 and have made it our responsibility to educate our customers and warn the public. Preventing fraudulent activities such as remote access, phishing, vishing, and more requires financial institutions and consumers to work together,” he said.

“People can learn about the latest fraudulent scams and how to avoid them through our trusted digital platform under the Security Center tab.”

Scams on the rise

Meanwhile, cybersecurity firm Kaspersky’s latest annual spam and phishing report details the ways cyber fraudsters have tried to lure users over the past year.

“Cyber ​​fraudsters involved in the creation and distribution of spam and phishing attempted to lure users using topics focused on lucrative investments, online streaming of world’s first movies or TV shows and related topics restriction requirements and benefits of the ongoing pandemic,” the group said. .

“Spam is a type of malicious activity that involves mass or targeted distributions of emails. target to engage in a dialog, click on a malicious link or open a malicious attachment,” Kaspersky said.

“Phishing often takes the form of spam associated with a malicious copy of a legitimate website. These copies collect users’ private data or encourage the transfer of money to fraudsters.

Some of the more common scams used to attract South Africans include:


Compensation following the pandemic

Kaspersky reported that two dominant scam methods using the pandemic theme were the most popular.

At first, users were ‘informed’ that they were receiving compensation from their government’s pandemic support program, but to get the compensation, they would have to pay a transaction fee,” Kaspersky said.

As a result, crooks got their hands on users’ bank details and money.

Businesses have also been targeted. In this scenario, the email would notify an employee of a targeted organization and indicate that they are subject to specific pandemic compensation. The employee was then asked to confirm the company’s account on a specific web page for the company to receive the compensation.


Fake vaccine certificates

“The second way the subject of the pandemic has been used to perpetuate scams has been through the sale of vaccination certificates,” Kaspersky said.

The victims were offered a vaccination certificate, which would allow them to access public spaces and travel without having to go through the vaccination procedure.

“Because it is illegal to obtain a vaccination certificate without having a vaccine, it was very unlikely that the victim of such a scam would report the problem,” Kaspersky said.


World film premieres

Kaspersky said the criminals are also offering early access to a recently created hit movie streaming.

Users see an intro trailer or video, after which they are prompted to enter payment details to continue watching.

“This program has remained popular in 2021; scams on this theme accompanied almost every major movie, TV series or major sports program,” Kaspersky said.


Investments in cryptocurrencies or stocks

Kaspersky Report Predicts Scammers Offer “100% Safe” Investment Opportunities; when in reality, these offers serve to trick victims into transferring money to the fraudsters’ accounts.

He pointed out that these topics have remained the “bread and butter” of scammers because they are very effective and people trust what they see in their inboxes too much.


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