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Banks continue fight against scammers as new report shows drop in losses  

Banks continue fight against scammers as new report shows drop in losses  

29 April 2024

Banks are continuing to play their part to protect Australians from scams, as the industry welcomes a new report showing scam losses fell by 13 per cent last year.  

The Australian Banking Association acknowledges the release today of the 2023 Targeting Scams Report by the National Anti-Scam Centre. Whilst there was an 18.5 per cent increase in scam reports in 2023, financial losses dropped by around $400 million to $2.7 billion.  

ABA CEO Anna Bligh said there were positive signs that progress was being made in the war against scammers.    

“It’s absolutely devastating when we see Australians lose money to the criminal gangs operating these sophisticated scams,” said ABA CEO Anna Bligh. 

“Whilst scam reports increased, financial losses are down, which shows Australians are alert to the risks and collective efforts from Government, banks, telcos and other industries are making a difference.  

“Scams are a scourge on our society, and banks are working around the clock to protect Australians and put scammers out of business.   

“The banking industry’s Scam-Safe Accord is a major step-up in protections from banks to shield consumers from scammers. It’s a set of world-leading safeguards by banks to help keep the money of Australians safe.  

“Banks are now regularly stopping payments to crypto exchanges used to syphon money out of Australia as well as detecting and blocking transfers to dodgy bank accounts.  

“Scam-proofing Australia will require a collective effort. Better protecting Australians from scams can only be achieved if every part of the chain leans in as hard as they can.  

“We need to be hitting scammers from all angles. Banks and the telcos have said they will back the Government’s mandatory scams code, and I strongly encourage the social media platforms to do the same.” 

The industry’s Scam-Safe Accord includes:  

  • a $100 million investment by banks in a new confirmation of payee system, ensuring people can confirm they are transferring money to the person they intend to 
  • introducing more warnings and payment delays to protect customers  
  • adopting further technology and controls to help prevent identity fraud, such as the use of at least one biometric check for new individual customers opening accounts  
  • investing in a major expansion of intelligence sharing across the sector  
  • all banks to implement anti-scams strategies.  

More information on the Scam-Safe Accord can be found here.   

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