Security centre

Fighting fraud is the responsibility of every one of us. Learn about how you can protect yourself and your possessions.

Financial fraud

It is important that customers are able to protect themselves and their possessions from fraud. In order to be able to do this, customers need to be alert and knowledgeable about what fraud is and how to protect themselves. The following information will describe the typical information that fraudsters are looking for, the top six financial crimes and tips on how to avoid them

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The information that criminals and fraudsters are typically looking for are
  • Account/card numbers and expiry dates
  • Magnetic Stripe Data (track 1 and/or track 2)
  • CVV2 (the three-digit code on the back of cards)
  • Personal Identification Numbers (PINs)
  • Personal information
  • Name and address
  • Phone/mobile number
  • Identity number
  • Online/Mobile Banking login credentials
  • Internal company user identities and passwords
  • Policies and processes
1. Cheque fraud

This refers to fraud on a customer’s account using a cheque leaf/leaves not authorised by the account signatory/signatories. The typical kinds of cheque frauds are;

  • Cloned Cheques - This is where fraudsters try to make fake cheque books and use to defraud customers.
  • Washed Cheques - These are cheque leaves where some information have been erased and substituted with details of a customer who is going to be defrauded.
  • Altered Cheques - These are genuine cheques ready to be presented but lands in the hands of a fraudster and payment instructions like payee details are altered.
  • Stolen Cheques - These are genuine cheque leaves stolen from a cheque book by a fraudster and account signatories forged and used to defraud the customer.

Important tips to avoid cheque fraud:

  • Never sign blank cheques
  • Report the loss of your cheque book or card to the bank immediately
  • Avoid posting cheques as they could be intercepted
  • Do not leave open spaces. Instead, draw a line to avoid any information being added
  • Reconcile your cheques against your bank statements.
  • It is important to check your bank statements regularly and look out for any suspicious transactions
  • Do not use abbreviations as payee details
  • Use crossings appropriately
  • Familiarise yourself with the different bank cheque layouts
2. Money Fraud

This is the process by which funds generated from criminal activities are transformed into seemingly legitimate money or other assets. In several regulatory systems, the term Money Laundering is sometimes used more generally to include financing terrorism, tax evasion and evading international sanctions.

Important tips to avoid Money Laundering:

  • Do not accept proceeds of crime as payment for goods or services rendered
  • If you suspect that the money you are paid is from the proceeds of crime, report the matter to the police
  • Never open a bank account on behalf of another person in your name, irrespective of the circumstances
  • Do not allow another person to deposit, transfer or withdraw funds from your account
3. Card and ATM Fraud

This is a wide-ranging term for theft and fraud committed using a debit or credit card as a fraudulent source of funds in a transaction. This can be done to get goods without paying for them or access unauthorised funds from an account.

Important tips to avoid Card Fraud:

  • Never write down your PIN or disclose it to anyone
  • Never let your card out of your sight
  • Review your account statements regularly
  • Report lost and stolen cards immediately
  • Destroy your card receipts before discarding them
  • Ensure that you get your own card back after every purchase
  • Sign your card as soon as you receive it


Important tips to avoid ATM Fraud:

  • Remain aware of your surroundings without allowing anything or anyone to distract you when using it
  • Choose a familiar and well-lit ATM where you are more visible and safe
  • If you think the ATM is faulty, cancel the transaction immediately and try another ATM to transact
  • Be cautious of strangers offering to help you as they could be trying to distract you in order to get your card or PIN details
4. Phishing

This is an attempt, made via e-mail or phone, to steal your personal information and defraud you.

It usually involves fraudsters requesting you to click on a link, either from an e-mail or text message, which directs you to a bogus website or installs a Trojan on your phone.

Important tips to avoid Phishing:

  • Phishing sites, e-mails and SMS’s often ask for information that Stanbic Bank would never ask you for or would never request you to update, such as your personal or banking information
  • Do not click on any links to e-mails to access our Online Banking website. Instead, always enter our website address,, in the address bar to connect to our Online Banking site
  • Do not create shortcuts on your desktop to Online Banking. Malicious software could redirect the shortcut to phishing sites
  • Make sure to keep your electronic payment and daily withdrawal limits to a minimum
5. 'Card not present' Fraud (Online)

This is a wide-ranging term for theft and fraud committed, without the fraudster being in possession of your card, in order to make online purchases using your card details.

Important tips to avoid ‘Card Not Present’ Fraud:

  • Check your bank statements often for any suspicious transactions and if you find any, contact us immediately
  • You should always keep your statements and cards in a safe place
6. Identity theft and impersonation

This refers to fraudsters stealing your identity or impersonating you, using your personal information.

Important tips to avoid Identity Theft and Impersonation:

  • Shred anything with personal information before throwing it away
  • When you trade, sell or dispose of a computer system, a hard drive or even a recordable CD or DVD, take extra steps to make sure that the digital data is completely destroyed
  • Check your bank statements often for any suspicious transactions
  • Limit how much information you carry with you
7. The popular scams you need to know about are

a) Advance Fee Fraud

This is often attempted through an unsolicited e-mail, in which you are asked to pay money in the hope of sharing in a much greater reward. It is also known as a 419 scam.

b) ‘Change of Banking Details’ Scam

This is when you receive a letter on a company letterhead that appears to be authentic (or an e-mail from a company that you believe is one of your trusted suppliers) informing you of a change of their bank account details. When you make a payment to the ‘new’ account, the fraudster withdraws the funds immediately.