BBC Watchdog Charlotte Higman

This week, Tenet’s Arun Chauhan has been working with BBC Watchdog to help an RBS customer affected by a telephone scam.

Charlotte Higman lost over £4,300 from her RBS bank account when a fraudulent caller requested to alter her bank details for security reasons.

The bank followed protocols and called Charlotte’s landline directly but the fraudulent caller anticipated this and diverted the call to a mobile. Once the details were successfully reset, the fraudster requests that a sum of more than £4,300 is transferred to their bank account.

During the same call, the fraudster requests a second transfer but the bank flags up one of the security questions as being incorrect and denies the transfer but still allowing the first transfer of the initial £4,300.

The bank insisted they followed protocols in using Charlotte’s landline to verify her identity so she must be aware of the transactions.

“You can hear what the caller has tried to do is put together two transactions for the full balance of the account and the bank just don’t pick it up as a warning sign,” says Arun.

“They know at the end, this is fraud but they’ve done nothing about the first transaction and that’s why Charlotte should be so critical of the bank.”

Earlier this month, RBS apologised for the incident and issued a full refund to Charlotte.

Since her case, a new voluntary code of conduct which states that if a customer or a bank, has missed warning signs, they will be liable for subsequent losses. A number of banks have now signed up to this code – hopefully preventing others from going through Charlotte’s ordeal.

“Although the new code of conduct will help to address customers’ compensations for losses, it doesn’t necessarily help to prevent future losses,” adds Arun. “Customers should be cautious of their landline and mobile calls, contacting their provider if they’re concerned of any security breaches.”

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