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Bank of Russia warns about five signs of fraud phone calls

14 December 2020

In the run-up to New Year holidays, the regulator has provided banks with its recommendations as to how customers should be informed about clear signs of telephone fraud.

‘Telephone fraudsters tend to go into overdrive in the run-up to New Year. It’s important to remind everyone once again how to counter them. Let that be a hundredth, a thousandth reminder — it will never do harm; people should realise that anyone may become a target of fraudsters, and people should know what to do to counter their calls. It is the responsibility of the regulator, as well as of banks, to protect people’s savings — which were sometimes earned through very hard work’, said Deputy Governor Bank of Russia Dmitry Skobelkin.

Listed below are key signs of telephone fraud: First, an unexpected call or a SMS from an unknown speaker, no matter how they might introduce themselves (a bank / police officer, a sales agent) is good reason to be on the alert.

Second, the conversation turns to a money transfer, when the speaker, on various pretexts, is asking the customer to make a transaction with an allegedly safe account, to make a tax payment, a payment for a reservation, a fine, an advance payment etc.

Third, the speaker may come up with a supposedly very good buy: a prize, payments of any sort, a unique loan / deposit offering, or an investment product offering a high yield. There may be opposite scenarios, when the scammer scares the consumer with loss of money.

Fourth, the speaker uses any pretext to find out bank card details (card number, three-digit code on the reverse, PIN, SMS code or personal data).

Last, one may be exposed to psychological pressure: demanding an instant decision on a money transfer or disclosure of bank card details.

A real bank officer or any other real representative will never request that any data of their card be disclosed. A bank representative may indeed get in touch with a customer if there are signs suggestive of an authorised transaction. Even if this is the case, it is best to give a call to the bank on the number available on its website / bank card and find out the reason for the call.

More details are available on the website fincult.info.