72% fall in telephone banking fraud attempts recorded by HSBC UK

The bank said although telephone fraud is decreasing, scams where customers are tricked into making a bank transfer are on the increase.

Vicky Shaw
Wednesday 16 February 2022 14:59 GMT
HSBC UK has recorded a 72% fall in telephone banking fraud attempts at the start of this year compared with January 2021 (Charlotte Ball/PA)
HSBC UK has recorded a 72% fall in telephone banking fraud attempts at the start of this year compared with January 2021 (Charlotte Ball/PA) (PA Wire)

HSBC UK has recorded a big fall in fraudsters attempting to get through its security systems by phoning the bank pretending to be its customers.

The bank’s voice biometrics system, Voice ID, identified 370 calls made by fraudsters in January 2022 – down by 72% from 1,340 in January 2021.

In total, around 7,000 fraudulent calls were identified by the bank in 2021, down from 11,905 in 2020.

Voice ID is used to verify customers using HSBC UK’s telephone banking service.

The technology detects if the voice matches that which is held on file for the customer and so indicates whether or not the caller is genuine.

Although telephone fraud is decreasing, APP (authorised push payment fraud or bank transfer) scams are on the rise so it's important for customers to stay vigilant

Dave Callington, HSBC UK

Around 50,000 fraudulent calls have been recorded by Voice ID since the introduction of the technology in 2016.

The bank said the number of telephone payment fraud victims it recorded last month was also down by 60% compared with January 2021.

Customers need to opt in to Voice ID to use it and 3.2 million customers are currently registered.

David Callington, head of fraud at HSBC UK, said: “Fraudsters may attempt to impersonate customers by stealing or guessing personal information to pass security checks – but it’s extremely difficult to replicate someone’s voice.”

He added: “It’s a constant challenge to keep ahead of the scammers. Although telephone fraud is decreasing, APP (authorised push payment fraud or bank transfer) scams are on the rise so it’s important for customers to stay vigilant.

“Whilst we have an expert team detecting fraud, customers can help themselves by registering for Voice ID and continuing to take note of all scam warnings when completing payments online.”

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