Fraudster Alert

In the midst of technical advancement and economic sophistication, stems a common phenomenon of financial crimes. These crimes are a form of theft or larceny that occur when a person
12 Nov 2016 11:14
Fraudster Alert

In the midst of technical advancement and economic sophistication, stems a common phenomenon of financial crimes.

These crimes are a form of theft or larceny that occur when a person or entity takes money or property, or uses them in an illicit manner, with the intent to gain a benefit from it.

It usually comes in the form of deceit, subterfuge or the abuse of a position of trust, which distinguishes them from usual theft or robbery.

Fraud and financial crimes can take many forms and here we will strive to share some such instances of fraud in our own homeland.

This is a new series that will re-write new and old financial fraud stories to emphasize lessons learnt and precautionary measures that can be taken.

The series will hide identities of the actual persons and use colours as the name of characters.

These colours will be used in all its stories with the colours mimicking the various personalities or characters.

Please feel free to send in original stories to protect our beloved Fiji and our families and loved ones.

This story, which was recently printed in our dailies, sheds light on the importance of safeguarding your personal information.

Mr White, a former Fiji resident, claimed that $20,000 was withdrawn from his account by an unknown man, without his knowledge.

Mr White claimed that the unknown man, named Mr Grey, presented a letter to his bank on his behalf while he was abroad.

In the letter Grey wrote that the account holder, Mr White, had given Grey the authority to withdraw the said amount.

The letter further stated that Mr White has taken a personal loan of $20,000 and wishes to use his withdrawn funds as the repayment for that loan.

Mr White, who is a businessman, was alarmed to see the transaction when he checked his account through internet banking.

The funds were withdrawn from two locations; $15,000 from Lautoka and $5000 from Ba.

What was more intriguing is that Grey had copies of Mr White’s driver’s license, TIN card and other official documents and claimed that it was original, when the originals were actually with Mr White, the rightful owner.

The bank staff did not seek any confirmation from Mr White prior to releasing the funds.


The lesson to learn from this is that :

 One should not entrust the third party with any sorts of personal information.

 Do not disclose your financial stance to anyone unless absolutely needed.

 Always ensure that the official documents and identification cards are not easily accessible. Your ATM card pin is the same as your signature protect it’s at all costs.

 You have every right to claim compensation from the bank and typically any negligence by banks are always honoured. Given laws protecting consumers and reputational risk faced by banks in such cases.

 The other key advise is that we all must have a habit of keeping all receipts and statements. These are help full in where we spending our money and how much. It also allows for insurance or incorrect billings etcetera.

 Then we must always sit with our loved ones and go through our bank statements.

Checking all deposits and withdrawals that they were done by ourselves.

Thus eliminating fraud but also updating us on our spending and how we faring with our savings. Deposits are key as we will not be tempted to use incorrect credits into our accounts.

 That we will eventually need to repay or be dishonest ourselves.

 In the absence of savings I’d suggest the cheaper option of insurance.

Again you might want to add all the premium payments against what you will be getting.

As savings discipline is cheaper but tougher.

The festive season is upon us and so will temptation for spending more and defrauding others will be strife. Be safe.
This is an informative publication, sponsored by The Fiji Sun, Fiji Bureau of Statistics and HFC Bank. All views expressed or implied are purely of the Treasurer at the HFC Bank, Peter Fuata.

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