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Phishing time again

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Trends have indicated that phishing fraud tends to pick up towards the end of the year. Absa urges its customers to remain informed and to exercise caution when performing online transactions.

Trends indicate that phishing fraud tends to escalate towards the latter part of the year and Absa has urged its customers to remain informed and become increasingly vigilant so that they do not become victims of attempted phishing attacks.

‚Phishing is done via SMS, email or telephone and aims to get hold of your personal and banking details in order to fraudulently withdraw money from your account. Never divulge your banking details to anyone via any of these channels. Also, the golden rule to be remembered is that Absa will never send you an email requesting that you click on a link or attachment to upgrade your service or to confirm your logon details,‚ emphasises Opperman.

‚Absa continually upgrades its security measures and monitors the latest online fraud tactics. This year, we have seen fraudsters becoming more sophisticated in their attempts,‚ adds Opperman.

He cautions against a relatively new scam known as ‚SIM swapping’ whereby fraudsters illegally replicate cellular SIM cards in order to obtain the passwords that customers utilise when conducting online banking.

Adds Opperman: ‚SIM swaps are normally done by using fraudulent ID books at cellular outlets. Though it is not always easy for the user to detect a SIM swap, a telltale sign could be the permanent loss of cellphone signal for no apparent reason, in which case it is important for one to contact their network operator and report the incident.‚

To help curb ongoing phishing attacks, Absa advises its clients to adhere to the following rules:

· Keep your access information secure (account number, PIN and password).

¬∑ Ignore emails or SMSes if you are unsure of their source ‚ especially where they may contain a link or attachment and claim to be from your bank.

· If an email is not addressed to you personally (e.g. Dear Mr Bloggs), it is likely to be a scam.

· Refrain from banking at public terminals such as Internet Cafes.

· Only shop online and provide credit card details to reputable companies.

· Up-to-date anti-virus software and internet browsers reduce the risk of fraud.

Absa provides these free of charge to customers. Click on Security Centre from www.absa.co.za for more details and for up-to-date security related information.

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