Ezulwini: An empowered consumer is the most effective arsenal in addressing emerging security challenges such as cyber security, data breaches, and social engineering. This was disclosed by the Chairperson of Eswatini’s Banking Association, Mbali Sibanyoni during the launch of the International Fraud Awareness Week 2021.
The objective of International Fraud Awareness Week is to alleviate the impact of fraud by promoting anti-fraud awareness and education. The risk of digital fraud in the financial sector continues to escalate. Therefore members of the public are encouraged to be extra cautious when transacting online.
Sibanyoni says “it has been observed that the Covid-19 pandemic has perpetrated the fluctuation in financial crime trends over the past two years. Banking customers have learned and leveraged on technology to transact either for their personal consumption or for business.”
She notes that “financial services payment systems have over the past decade evolved rapidly in response to technological revolutions. The rapid integration of technology has largely been driven by the growing desire to satisfy customers and improve efficiencies. However, with this, fraud remains a challenge threatening safe transacting across the payment channels.”
“As banks, we need to continually invest in cutting-edge technology and collaborate with partners to ensure that everyone is protected every time they pay or are paid using our products, solutions, and platforms. With the festive season upon us, there is a need to create awareness with many of our customers on the dangers of fraud. Many scammers and thieves will be looking to cash out as people become preoccupied with shopping, festivities, and travel.
The National Commissioner of Police, William Dlamini, informed the bankers that “we are here to protect the public during this time of cyber-crime and electronic fraud. We are here to give support to the financial institutions whose role in enhancing the country’s economy is pivotal. Criminals are never at rest, they are always finding innovative ways of carrying out criminal activity. It, therefore, pleases me that as the Royal Eswatini Police Services (REPS) we continue to collaborate with the Eswatini Bankers Association (EBA). Recently the EBA bought us a motor vehicle for the police to use when transporting money.”
“We are cognizant of the fact that we are in the front line in preventing crime. As the world pulls together in minimizing fraudulent activity, the public must be vigilant in curbing crime especially during this time of the year. The theme of this year’s Fraud Awareness Week is “Think Before You Click” which encourages thoughtfulness when carrying out internet transactions.”