In ActiveMoney this week we published an item that featured on TVNZ's Sunday programme recently – it was the one produced by ABC in Australia and talked about cyber-crime and what lengths these crooks go to, not only to steal your cash but to also steal your identity.
I've often wondered how those banks, who say they'll reimburse you should someone steal from your bank account online, would actually reimburse you when someone stole your identity. It's not just about the cash. Someone can do as much damage by getting into your account online and simply stealing your identity and using it for illegal means.
I was talking to someone yesterday at a banking & technology conference about identity theft, and he told me how it had happened to him but not online. Someone simply came to his letterbox and stole his bank statement. They then tried to use this information to get access to his monies but fortunately didn't satisfy all the questions they were asked by the bank to identify themselves.
Anyway, that wasn't really what I wanted to talk about. What has happened since we published “ Fear in the fast lane” is that a few customers have contacted us and have asked if they should stop all online banking. At the same conference yesterday I was on a panel and one of the questions I was specifically asked was how have RaboPlus built a reputation based on security via the online channel. And my answer then is the same answer that we've been giving our customers who were somewhat alarmed by “ Fear in the fast lane”.
At RaboPlus we see it as a partnership – we are doing all we possibly can to protect our clients online. We provide the best available technology in NZ via our Digipass and at the same time we educate people on online security best-practices. Not just best-practices for banking, but best practices for simply playing in the online world. And for your part, as customers, we expect you to adopt these best practices and do all that you can to protect yourselves – most of which are common sense or things that you wouldn't do in the face-to-face world so you shouldn't treat the online world any differently.
Some people have also asked why didn't you supplement the “ Fear in the fast lane” article with a piece about RaboPlus security? To be honest I didn't want it to be contrived. I didn't want to post a news story which was extreme yet real, and then put a piece about our security alongside side it … I didn't want to be accused of scare mongering and at the same time selling the benefits of our solution. At the end of the day I simply wanted to make sure people are educated and aware of what criminals are up to – sorry if we alarmed some of you. As always feel free to give us a call here in Wellington on 0800 22 44 33 as we are more than happy to help you with questions around online security.
Security is paramount to RaboPlus so you can be assured we are doing all we can to provide the best security and information available.