The banking industry has been one of the fastest adopters of digital technology. Unfortunately, the popularity of digital banking services has led to a significant rise in online banking scams.
In this post, we’ll share the five most common online banking scams you need to watch out for. So, without further ado, here they are.
1) Phishing scams
Phishing is the most popular online banking scam worldwide, with over 500 billion attempts by cyber criminals.
These scams involve using emails or text to manipulate victims into sharing personal information about their banking accounts, including:
- Account number or password;
- Social security number;
- Other banking details include bank name, account type, credit card number, etc.
These malicious individuals aim to get any information that can gain them access to your banking or digital payment accounts to steal money or make fraudulent transactions. They’re incredibly popular since humans will likely click on links out of curiosity, visit a fake page, or fail to pay attention to sender information.
2) Employment scams
A study by Security Magazine claims that 93% of fraudulent banking transactions and financial attacks are online.
With the job market becoming incredibly competitive, many scammers are making things worse for job seekers by enticing them with employment opportunities to gain access to their financial accounts.
In other words, they simply promise you a low or medium-effort job with high financial reward and ask you to pay an upfront fee for their services. Some may even offer to transfer money to your account to prove the job’s legitimacy, prompting you to share your banking details.
Although these jobs generally come through social media and email, many traditional scammers also target victims with calls and text messages from VoIP numbers.
3) Fake digital banking application scams
Fake applications have become a serious problem for various industries, including banking. Malicious application developers create fake banking apps and make them available for download on various channels, including Google Play Store.
When users download these apps, they input their banking credentials and serve them on a silver platter to scammers without even knowing it. Some even contain malicious software that hacks into your authentic digital banking apps.
4) Call center vishing
Have you ever received a call from a shady number informing you that your bank account is under review or that your credit/debit card is about to expire?
You’re not alone.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, over 2.4 million fraud calls were made in 2022, with around 18% related to digital payment accounts.
Call center vishing has been around for decades. It’s a social engineering attack involving scammers pretending to be business representatives, including banks and credit unions.
They aim to trick customers into sharing their banking information to get access to their accounts and perform fraudulent transactions.
5) E-transfer interception and ATS fraud
Modern online banking scams are becoming more sophisticated as scammers employ more advanced methods to gain access to your accounts or funds. E-transfer interceptions are among the latest industry frauds and are wildly popular in countries and regions with pool banking infrastructures and security measures.
As the term suggests, it redirects your electronic transfers to a different account instead of the intended recipient before or during transactions. Some use hacking tools to physically change the recipient’s details in the back-end, while others trace and reroute the signals.
Another similar scam is the automatic transfer system (ATS). Fraudsters use it to tap into their victim’s account and gradually steal their money without them knowing. The purpose of this scam is to keep the scam going for as long as possible with small automated transactions that eventually lead to a lot.
To avoid falling victim to this scam, hide your IP address, and you’ll be able to deceive cybercriminals. This is especially useful if you’re planning a trip. A VPN for ticket is your best bet.
The bottom line
The banking industry is evolving rapidly as users become more accustomed to online transactions. With online banking scams becoming stronger and more frequent every year, you must be extra vigilant and take the necessary steps to protect your accounts and money.
For instance, you can create a strong account password to create a solid front line of defense. Other tips include enabling multi-factor authentication, not answering unsolicited calls, using VPNs to secure your network when using public WiFi, and checking your banking statements regularly.