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Access Bank Launches Awareness Campaign To Combat E-Banking Fraud

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As part of its continued commitment to educate and protect customers from e-banking fraud, Africa’s largest retail bank, Access Bank Plc, has launched an awareness campaign aimed at sensitizing customers on measures they can take to protect themselves.

The campaign, themed ‘Banks Don’t Ask’, focuses on three key activities that account for most fraud incidents in Nigeria, phishing, SIM card fraud, ATM fraud, and POS fraud.

From all indications, the rates of phishing, SIM card fraud, ATM fraud, and POS fraud in the country have tripled in the past few years. Also, the sophistication with which these activities are carried out has evolved, resulting in unsuspecting customers being highly susceptible to these criminal activities.

Victor Etuokwu, ED Retail Banking stated, “In the past few years, there has been a significant increase in the rate of internet-based and technology-perpetrated fraud”. He added “We want to ensure that our customers are not only protected but are also aware of the tactics employed by fraudsters. Access Bank will never request personal banking information such as your 16-digit card number, password, PIN, BVN, CVV, or One-Time Password (OTP). So, customers are also advised to never share this information with anyone even if they claim to be from the Bank”.

To report suspicious activities (phone calls, emails or text messages), customers can call Access Bank on 01- 2712005 or send a mail to [email protected]. To prevent SIM card fraud in cases of lost or stolen devices, customers can simply *901*911# from any phone deactivate their USSD profile.

BIG STORY

BUSINESS: Investing In Davido’s Coin Highly Risky, SEC Warns Nigerians

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The public has been cautioned by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) not to invest in the meme coin that is purportedly associated with popular Nigerian artist David Adedeji Adeleke, better known by his stage name Davido.

The commission made this known in a statement published on its website on Friday.

The SEC issued a warning, saying that users of the meme coin do so at their own risk.

“The general public is hereby advised that meme coins lack fundamental value and are purely speculative. The general public is further warned that investing in meme coins, including $Davido, is highly risky and should be done with a full understanding of the associated risk.

“Capital market operators are by this notice warned not to associate with instruments that fall outside the SEC’s regulatory purview. Such instruments should not in any manner be distributed or monitored through any capital market mechanism.

“Please note that the commission does not recognise $Davido as an investment product or investable asset class under its regulatory purview, as such individuals who patronize it, do so at their peril,” the statement read.

The SEC said it will keep a close watch on market developments and is ready to step in with regulatory action as needed.

The commission further explained, “Generally, meme coins are cryptocurrencies inspired by memes and internet jokes. They are often envisaged as fun, light-hearted cryptocurrencies promoted through a social media community and sometimes through celebrity endorsements.

“Meme coins are also not intended to serve as a medium of exchange accepted by the public as payment for goods and services, or as a digital representation of capital market products such as shares, debentures, units of collective investment schemes, derivatives contracts, commodities or other kinds of financial instruments or investments.”

The music star unveiled a meme coin called $Davido on Wednesday, May 29, 2024.

However, the meme coin has been widely criticised by Nigerians after its value nosedived just a day after its launch.

Social media was awash with disappointed investors and fans venting their frustration as the coin’s value plummeted, with many expressing their dismay and disillusionment.

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BIG STORY

Multichoice Group Has An Account Balance Of N31.6 Billion With Heritage Bank

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Multichoice Group, owners of DSTV, had an account balance of N31.6 billion with Heritage Bank, before the bank’s liquidation.

According to the group’s annual report for FY 2024, Multichoice had a deposit of N33.7 billion (488 million South African Rands) with the bank as of the 2024 fiscal year end on March 31, 2024.

However, that balance was subsequently reduced to N31.6 billion (ZAR 400 million) due to cash remittances before the bank’s liquidation on June 3, 2024.

The significant deposit raises concerns for the group, as the sum far exceeds the N5 million maximum payout guaranteed by the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Commission (NDIC).

However, according to Multichoice’s annual report, the group will engage the liquidator (NDIC) to “ensure a reasonable outcome is achieved”.

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BIG STORY

NDIC Puts Heritage Bank’s Head Office, Vehicles, Other Assets On Sale

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In its capacity as the bank’s liquidator, the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) has put the collapsed Heritage Bank’s head office in Lagos and its branches around the nation up for sale.

In an editorial published on Thursday, NDIC announced the sale of 48 bank premises as well as its chattel, which includes automobiles, office equipment, plant, and machinery in 62 other locations across the nation.

“The Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation in the exercise of its right as Liquidator of failed Deposit Money Banks hereby invites interested members of the general public to buy the assets (landed property and chattels) of defunct Heritage Banks through public competitive bidding,” part of the advertorial read.

The head office of the bank and its annex located at 143 Ahmadu Bello Way and 130 Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island, Lagos was listed for sale (buildings, chattels, generator, and motor vehicle). Also listed for sale were six other branches in Lagos, four branches in Abuja, four in Rivers States, and the others spread across the country.

Interested parties are invited to come for an inspection and subsequently put in bids on the assets to be submitted to the NDIC office in Lagos.

Bids are expected to come in with 10 per cent of the bid amount in Certified Bank Draft. Successful bidders will be required to pay the balance of the bid price within two weeks of notification.

Earlier, the corporation announced the commencement of the verification and payment of the depositors of the bank with N5m or less in their accounts. This category of customers makes up about 99 per cent of the bank customers.

The Managing Director of the NDIC, Bello Hassan, at a media briefing on the liquidation of Heritage Bank in Abuja last Wednesday, put the total depositors at Heritage Bank at 2.3 million.

Hassan noted that the total bank deposits at Heritage Bank stood at N650bn while its loan portfolio was about N700bn.

In announcing the revocation of the licence of Heritage Bank, the apex bank in a statement signed by the Acting Director of Corporate Communication, Sidi Ali, said, “This action has become necessary due to the bank’s breach of Section 12 (1) of BOFIA, 2020. The board and management of the bank have not been able to improve the bank’s financial performance, a situation which constitutes a threat to financial stability.

“This follows a period during which the CBN engaged with the bank and prescribed various supervisory steps intended to stem the decline. Regrettably, the bank has continued to suffer and has no reasonable prospects of recovery, thereby, making the revocation of the licence the next necessary step.”

Stakeholders in the sector have gone on to express confidence in the decision of the CBN in the overall interest of the sector.

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