Staff Writer

The reduction in physical shopping, together with social distancing and a heightened awareness of personal safety, have made online shopping our go-to place for retail therapy in recent months.

Fraudsters were quick to spot the opportunity and have increased their attempts to defraud consumers through Card Not Present shopping activity.

Fraudsters are after your one-time PIN

‘The latest modus operandi is that criminals contact consumers to deceive them into willingly compromising their card details and one-time PIN (OTP),’ says Ingrid Kahona-Katjiukua, FNB Namibia Forensics.

“Criminals call pretending to be from your bank, informing you that there’s been fraud detected on your account while offering help to reverse the transactions. They ask you to read out the OTP you have just received, and this enables them to fraudulently purchase goods using your card details online. Most people unknowingly fall victim to fraud in this way.”

Kahona-Katjiukua shares these tips on how one cam protect themselves against fraud:

• Be alert when individuals contact you pretending to be from the bank.
• The bank will never ask you to disclose your full card number, CVV number, card PIN or one-time PIN.
• Protect your card details and ensure that you shop via secure platforms and websites.
• Register for inContact – a free instant SMS that notifies you when your card is swiped or when cash is withdrawn from your account.
• Do not disclose your one-time PIN to anyone ever, including family, friends and ‘bank officials’.
• Protect your CVV number and one-time PIN the same way you protect your card PIN.
• Never send emails quoting your card number, expiry date and CVV number (the last 3 digits on the back of your card).
• Never disclose your card number, expiry date and CVV number (the last 3 digits on the back of your card) to anyone pretending to be from the Bank
• Verify any claims made on a suspicious call by checking your transaction history through the banking App or the Contact Centre using the number on the back of the card.
• Should you suspect fraudulent activity, immediately report the incident or cancel the card via the FNB banking App.

As the upward trend of online shopping continues, Kahona-Katjiukua encourages consumers to familiarize themselves with the new ways that criminals attempt to defraud people.

“More importantly, we urge consumers to always protect their personal information – and remember, the bank will never ask for a one-time PIN or card PIN for any reason.”