Internet banking scams crackdown
By Veronique De Freitas
Date: October 23, 2003
UK banks have joined forces to issue safety guidelines for consumers to help protect themselves against the growing problem of financial email scams.
The British Bankers' Association (BBA) and the Association for Payment Clearing Services (APACS) have linked up with the UK's National Hi-Tech Crime Unit (NHTCU) to offer advice on surfing the net safely.
Recent unsolicited emails have seen internet criminals create lookalike websites for banks including Barclays and Lloyds TSB in an attempt to gain confidential information from their customers.
According to the banking industry, fraudsters behind the fake sites are often located outside the UK. They target UK accounts to send on stolen funds overseas.
The new guidelines are aimed at making people aware of the need to treat emails they receive with caution.
Detective Chief Superintendent Len Hynds at the NHTCU, said: "The message is - don't allow yourself to be duped. Remember, if an unsolicited money-making offer looks too good to be true, then it probably is."
Top Tips for staying safe online:
- Always access internet banking by typing the bank's address into your web browser. Never go to a site via a link in an email.
- Never give out passwords and confidential information
- Keep your PC secure with anti-virus software and personal firewalls
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