April 29, 2024

Fraudsters defrauded banks, PoS operators N18bn in 2023 – NIBSS


Nigeria’s financial institutions including commercial banks, Point of Sales (PoS) operators and others lost about N17.67 billion to fraudsters in 2023.

The Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) disclosed this in its Annual Fraud Landscape (January to December 2023) report published on its website on Monday.

NIBSS incorporated in 1993 offers a mechanism for same-day clearing and settlement of inter-bank transfers and payments

According to the report, the fraud count dropped by six per cent to 95,620, as actual loss from fraud grew by 23 per cent in 2023 when compared to 2022 with the first quarter being the month with the highest fraud volume in 2023 and the fourth quarter being the month with the highest fraud value.

It also disclosed that the month of May recorded the highest fraud count of 11,716, followed by February with 9,492 while October saw the highest actual loss in 2023 at N3.7 billion, followed by January with N2.7 billion.

According to the data submitted to NIBSS by financial institutions through the Industry Fraud Reporting Portal, the mobile channel is the preferred means for fraud as it increased by five per cent compared to the previous year.

Based on the report, the Web and POS businesses were the most exploited payment channels by fraudsters in 2023. 

It said the count of Web Fraud decreased by 38 per cent and ATM fraud recorded a 64 per cent reduction from 2022 to 2023.

Also, in 2023, people aged 40 and above remained the primary targets of fraudsters, which NIBSS said signified a persistent focus on the targeting strategy of fraudsters.

“This sustained trend emphasizes the enduring appeal of the demographic group as potential victims, reinforcing the need for continuous efforts to educate and protect individuals in this category from fraudulent activities,” NIBSS said.

In 2023, a total of 80,658 unique customers fell for the gimmicks of fraudsters which is four per cent less than 84,130 customers recorded in the previous year.

“This decline, though apparent, does not diminish the severity of the issue, urging the financial industry to remain vigilant, enhance security measures and collaboratively address the tenacious challenges posed by fraud,” it said.

The report, however, suggested some of the regulations inputted to check fraud in financial institutions need detailed examination, modification and reinforcement.

“Some regulations need thorough examination, modification, and reinforcement to reduce the potential for fraud and enhance the chances of successful recuperation,” the report added.