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ATM frauds on the rise again; Find out how to stay safe

Priyadarshini Maji
online fraud, digital payments, data security, data breach, PCI Security Standards Council Forum, mobile banking, mobile wallets, prepaid payment instruments, PPI, debit cards, credit cards, hdfc, sbi, state bank of India, bank fraud, how to stay safe from bank fraud,

Recently, 61 account holders of Punjab National Bank’s (PNB) Vasant Vihar branch in New Delhi have lost approximately Rs 15 lakh to fraudulent transactions. As per media reports, these transactions happened within a span of three days, and the bank has now approached the police with the complaint. It may be noted that online frauds, including mobile banking, online banking, phone banking and even frauds using ATMs, are on the rise. Though ATMs are considered the most convenient option for withdrawing cash using an ATM, debit or credit card, ATMs are also being used by fraudsters to withdraw money from somebody else s account without their knowledge.

Find out how to stay safe from the most common digital and online banking attacks:

Stay safe from phishing attacks

Phishing is a technique used by fraudsters to collect personal information like Internet banking user IDs and passwords, account numbers, and other banking details. The most frequently used method is to send a spam email, which is designed to look exactly like an email sent by the bank or any financial organization. However, once you click on the link mention in the mail, you will be asked to enter your user ID and password, to validate your account information. That way fraudsters get hold of your account details. Experts suggest that one should never enter any details without verifying the authenticity of the web page. Note that banks generally do not ask for personal security details like their customer’s internet banking or phone banking passwords.

Protect yourself from vishing

Vishing is very similar to phishing – the only difference being the technology used. It is generally done through phone calls. You will be particularly vulnerable to a vishing scam if you use a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone service. Vishing calls generally involve a fraudster posing as an employee from a bank or any other financial organization and asking the customer their personal details. They ask for confidential personal and banking information, such as your card PIN or password. Scammers generally tell a lot of convincing reasons why you need to share your information with them. However, avoid falling prey to such vishing scams as banks generally do not ask for such details. To authenticate a customer, banks normally ask a customer’s date of birth, billing address or email ID just for validation.

Zero Liability of the Customer

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has specified the maximum liability of the customer in case of third-party breaches. During such cases, neither the bank nor the customer stands responsible for any unauthorized transactions. Under the revised guidelines, RBI has identified situations wherein the customer will not be liable for unauthorized transactions. Irrespective of the fact whether you reported the transaction or not, in case of contributory fraud or negligence or deficiency on the part of the bank you will have zero liability for fraudulent transactions. If there has been a breach in the third party system, neither the bank nor the customer will be responsible. As a customer, your liability will be zero in such a case provided you notify the bank within 3 working days of receiving the communication from the bank regarding the unauthorized transaction.