17 March 2020

TSB reveals 100 percent reimbursement rate for innocent victims through the TSB Fraud Refund Guarantee

With the one-year anniversary of TSB’s Fraud Refund Guarantee approaching, the bank can reveal that every single TSB customer that was an innocent victim of fraud has received full reimbursement since the scheme’s introduction in April 2019.

As fraudsters continued to target consumers - TSB was the first and only bank that tackled the issue by launching its unique pledge to reimburse any TSB customer should they fall victim to this crime.  

Since then, TSB has reimbursed over 99 percent of all authorised push payment (APP) fraud cases where a customer has been tricked into sending a payment to a fraudulent account. Following rigorous investigation, TSB rejected less than one percent of customers whose claims were found to be fraudulent with the customer complicit in the case. 

Today, TSB can therefore reveal that the Bank’s reimbursement rate is 100 percent - with every genuine APP fraud loss returned to the victim. Meanwhile, 100 percent of unauthorised transfer fraud cases were also reimbursed. 

Across the industry fraud continues to impact customers, with UK Finance figures showing rising losses – £146.5 million lost in 2019 H1 to personal account holders and with an industry-wide reimbursement rate of 17.5 percent.

TSB’s unique pledge to refund all innocent victims of APP fraud was borne out of its recognition that fraud has become increasingly sophisticated and difficult for customers to protect themselves against.

While most believe fraud only impacts the elderly, TSB’s data shows losses to fraud are devastating to victims of all ages – and TSB believes that all innocent victims deserve the financial help and support to get their lives back on track.

According to TSB’s data victims of fraud range from ages 16 to 93 - all of whom were fully reimbursed through the Fraud Refund Guarantee.

For instance, a long-standing 83-year old customer fell victim to invoice fraud after his email had been compromised by a fraudster, which resulted in him being tricked into sending money to a fraudulent account - instead of the cement supplier he was intending to pay. TSB provided all the support the elderly victim needed and was able to reimburse the money within a day.

Another customer, a 16-year old male, fell victim to an impersonation scam after his friend’s social media account was hacked. The fraudster tricked the customer into transferring money to a fraudulent account by assuming the identity of his friend. TSB reassured the young victim that his genuine case was covered under the scheme and promptly reimbursed the customer.

Since the introduction of TSB’s Fraud Refund Guarantee, the Bank’s fraud department has found victims are willing to provide much more detailed information relating to their cases, which helps to inform the Bank’s preventative measures against future attacks, while also helping to hunt down the criminal gangs behind the crime.

TSB has seen a rise in scams targeting fears of Coronavirus, with criminals attempting to trick innocent customers into parting with their hard-earned cash. As such, the bank has prepared top tips for customers (notes to editors) to avoid becoming a victim during this uncertain time.

Ashley Hart, Head of Fraud, TSB, said: 

“Fraud continues to evolve, and the recent rise of scams targeting Coronavirus fears are a good example of that. However, TSB customers’ finances and livelihoods are fully protected by our unique pledge to reimburse their money should they ever become an innocent victim of fraud.

“Losses can be devastating – so we ensure our customers get all the financial help and support needed to get their lives back on track again.

“Meanwhile, we continue to invest in technology to boost fraud defences - and create carefully targeted partnerships with Police forces across the UK to help stop fraud from happening in the first place by hunting down criminals, disrupting thousands of attacks and arresting dozens of fraudsters.”

Notes to editors

TSB data used in the release is between April 14th 2019 – 29th February 2020.

TSB rigorously investigates all fraud claims – and reimburses money on a case-by-case basis.

The false claims that TSB’s fraud investigators exposed in which the account holder was found to be complicit in the case were all passed on to the Police.

TSB’s top tips to help people avoid becoming a victim of fraud during these turbulent times with the impact of Coronavirus:

  • Smishing: Fraudsters can ‘spoof’ text messages to look like they’ve originated from someone they haven’t i.e the government, the World Health Organisation or your local doctors' surgery. Don’t click on any links provided in text messages, and make sure you verify any telephone numbers given before calling.
  • Phishing: Covid-19 tax refund, refunds from your travel bookings, safety advice via email and donation requests are all ways in which fraudsters could try and make you click on dodgy links, or make you part with sensitive personal and financial information. Always stop and think about what you are being asked to do, and if you have any doubts, talk to family or friends. And don’t open attachments.
     
  • Vishing: Always be suspicious of unsolicited phone calls. Don’t be afraid to put the phone down if you can’t verify the caller and guard your details. Appearances can be deceptive, so if you have concerns, call the organisation back on the number listed on their website, or if it’s your bank, use the number on the back of your card.

Further information on the Fraud Refund Guarantee

TSB customers will need to contact the bank to report fraud by calling the number on the back of their card or 0800 096 8669, and TSB continues to robustly investigate the circumstances of the claim and how the fraud has happened. This enables us to give good advice to customers to keep them safe, as well as supporting our work with law enforcement. 

TSB will not repay losses that arise due to first party fraud, or where the customer is acting illegally. Customers that abuse the Fraud Refund Guarantee, for example by repeatedly ignoring account safety advice, may be excluded from the Guarantee.  

TSB will not refund losses for retrospective claims; the Fraud Refund Guarantee applies to fraud losses incurred on or after Sunday 14 April 2019.  

The guarantee covers authorised and unauthorised transactions for claims meeting the criteria; for authorised transactions the guarantee is limited to £1 million per claim.

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