FNB and Visa announce decrease in credit card fraud

By Janice Roberts

According to FNB and Visa, anti-fraud measures have reduced FNB Credit Card fraud by 39%.

However, research shows that there is still a need for consumer education and awareness when it comes to customers protecting their cards.

“We are seeing positive trends in the reduction of credit card fraud and we are confident that we can protect our customers. As long as they haven’t been negligent with their card information, they will not be held liable for any loss,” says Chris Labuschagne, CEO of FNB Credit Card.

FNB Credit Card recorded a less than 0.02% loss due to fraud in the last financial year. There has been a marked decline in fraud in the retail space as all cards now issued are protected by Chip and PIN.

According to recent research into consumer card security awareness 42% of people share their PIN with other people (one or more) and 4% have written their PIN down, or have it saved on their phone (6%). And while you might trust someone else with your PIN, they might not be as guarded with it as you are.

“Visa has invested heavily in advanced fraud-fighting technologies, and we continue to develop and deploy new and innovative programs that protect cardholders,” says Fred van der Westhuizen, Director for Risk Services for Visa in Sub-Saharan Africa.

“EMV or Chip & PIN is one of those technologies and we urge cardholders to be vigilant with their PIN number. Simply don’t share it, don’t write it down, and don’t store it in your phone as one can so easily be compromised.”

With a substantial rise in online shopping, both Visa and FNB have invested in multiple anti-fraud measures to protect customers in this space.

In an effort to make online payments easier and more secure, Visa recently launched Visa Checkout. This service enables customers to make purchases quickly and easily from their smartphone, tablet, laptop or PC.

Van der Westhuizen commented that this service enables customers to store their card and address information in a secure account, so that they only need to enter a username and password at checkout and that this technology accepts all major credit and debit card brands. Furthermore, shoppers never have to leave the merchant’s website to complete a purchase.

In addition to this, all FNB customers are automatically covered by Verified by Visa, which is a global authentication programme that provides an added level of security for online transactions. This service verifies the cardholder’s identity in real-time through the use of a password, so that customers can shop more confidently and merchants can accept Visa cards with peace of mind.

While FNB and Visa are confident that the various anti-fraud mechanisms are foiling scammers, fraudsters are still accessing card details from customers themselves.

“Consumers are still susceptible to phishing scams,” comments Labuschagne.

“Columinate research shows that only 73% of people know what phishing is. Phishing, simply put, is when fraudsters pretend to be from well-known companies, organisations, or government agencies and then contact consumers directly, trying to trick them into revealing their personal information.”

When consumers were asked how they protect themselves from phishing scams, 80% said that they do not click on suspicious links, followed by the fact that they never divulge their personal information online (42%), or they notify their bank immediately of any suspicious email doing the rounds (35%). The best way to protect oneself from phishing is to be vigilant and aware and never enter your banking information into a url that you did not type in yourself.

“We will continue to drive customer awareness and improve anti-fraud mechanisms and we are confident that we will see a continuing decline in fraud levels,” Labuschagne adds.


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