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SBP takes measures for prevention of digital bank fraud

KARACHI: The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Friday taken measures for prevention of digital bank fraud and issued directions to stakeholders in this regards.

The central bank said that in collaboration with other stakeholders it had initiated various measures to curtail digital banking frauds, conducted by employing social engineering tactics including fake calls.

In order to successfully design and deploy additional measures, it is vital to have sufficient information about these frauds.

In this respect, two standardized formats have been developed to record information relating to attempted and committed fake call frauds.

At the time of receiving the calls from customers for reporting of these frauds, the agents at call centers of all Banks/MFBs will record the information, where available, as per the given formats.

Banks/MFBs will report data recorded as per the prescribed formats to the Offsite Supervision & Enforcement Department (OSED) of SBP on monthly basis.

The data will be reported to the SBP in soft copy in Microsoft Excel within 10 days from the close of every month.

The SBP directed banks/MFBs to ensure that the call center agents are sufficiently trained to handle calls received for reporting digital banking frauds.

They must be capable of identifying attempted digital banking frauds related calls when a naive customer unaware of fraudulent attempt reports such instances.

Banks/MFBs will report the relevant information to PTA for blocking SIM/Device of the fraudsters used for committed/attempted digital banking frauds as soon as identified.

As a control mechanism to avoid any further financial loss, the call agents upon receiving calls for blocking digital channels/cards in case of fraud will immediately block all channels temporarily, under intimation to the customer, before seeking detailed verification from the customer.

The verification required from the customer as per procedure will subsequently be acquired on the same call.

For blocking of digital channels, the requirement to call from registered numbers would not be necessary since the customer may not have access to his/her registered telephone number; however, the banks may conduct enhanced verification in cases where the request for blocking of channels was received from an unregistered number.

In order to unblock the account/continue services, the Banks/MFBs will guide the customers as per their relevant policies.

Banks/MFBs are advised to implement the above measures within 30 days from the issuance of this circular.