Big jump in reported digital banking fraud in SA

Columinate has revealed the results of its sixth annual Internet Banking SITEisfaction survey, showing Capitec to be the new king in the digital banking category, ousting FNB.

Capitec also picked up top honours in the Mobile Banking category, but FNB beat the newcomer in the Internet Banking category by a fraction of a percentage point.

Columinate’s SITEisfaction survey is a measure of customer satisfaction with digital banking services in South Africa.

The report also found that while the instance of fraud has been the lowest it’s been in the last few years  – currently 46%, down from 50% in 2016, 55% in 2015, and 62% in 2014 –  more consumers are falling victim to the perpetrators, as 12% suffered losses in 2015, 14% in 2016, up to 19% in 2017.

There are several factors that can impact this score, Columinate said. For starters, 23% of consumers report that they are not the only users of the internet banking account, with 82% reporting that they share their credentials with a partner or spouse, and a further 10% admit their credentials are shared with their children or parents.

Columinate noted that multiple users on a single account can dramatically impair the integrity of that account, and this solution to a short-term annoyance may well prove to be a hindrance for long-term security.

“Additionally, there seems to be a dramatic lack of knowledge, understanding and awareness of the potential scams to which consumers could fall prey,” it said.

According to the findings of the survey, there has been a decline in consumer awareness levels of virtually every online threat, with 5% falling victim to a phishing scam, 7% falling victim to a SIM Swap scam, and 8% falling for a 419 scam.

“There is a massive opportunity for banks to broaden their product offering via their digital channels for the convenience and enjoyment of their customers.

“But equally, if not more importantly, the onus is on the banks to elucidate their customers on the threats they face when engaging with the bank online, from spoofed websites, to keyloggers, to data-stealing malware.

“The banks have to take responsibility for educating their customers, or at the very least, develop a product or solution that could protect these users should they fall victim to the inevitable crime,” said Elna Pretorius, co-founder and director at Columinate.


Read: Best and worst banks in South Africa for digital experience

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Big jump in reported digital banking fraud in SA