Central Bank urges customers to be cautious when making e-payments

1 August 2019 - 224   - 0

The Central Bank (CB) on Thursday urged customers of financial institutions to ‘adhere to adequate safety measures’ when making e-payments.

Customers should exercise caution when sharing any information that can be used to access and use their current or savings accounts, payment cards or electronic wallets (ewallets), the CB said in an announcement.

It said that electronic payment (e-payment) methods, such as real-time interbank fund transfers from customer current and savings accounts as well as card payment facilities, have provided a great convenience to customers. Sri Lanka’s payment systems and infrastructure meet international security standards to ensure the safety of customer funds.

Confidential information, it pointed out, include current and savings account numbers, credit or debit card details including the card number, CVV number and expiry date, National Identity Card (NIC) numbers, Internet or mobile banking or e-wallet passwords, Personal Identification Numbers (PINs), transaction verification information such as One-Time-Passwords (OTPs), transaction verification amounts and any other information that could be used to access, use or authenticate current and savings accounts, payment cards, e-wallets or any other e-payment methods. 

“Such information is provided to verify the customer’s identity and thereby increase the security of financial transactions and safeguard customer funds. Passwords, PINs, OTPs, transaction verification amounts or other transaction verification information must not be shared with any party and only used for its specified purpose. Failing to adhere to such safe practices will reduce the safety of customer’s own funds as fraudulent parties could gain access to customer accounts as well as funds using such information,” it said.

The CB together with Licensed Financial Institutions (LFIs) and other stakeholders has implemented several measures to help customers prevent fraudulent electronic transactions. Accordingly, LFIs are required to provide Short Message Service (SMS) alerts or any other real-time notification facilities for all e-payments as well as issue EMV chip-based payment cards. EMV chip-based payment cards have enhanced security features that are designed to prevent card-related fraudulent activities.

In order to prevent unauthorised electronic transactions, the CB said that customers should register for real-time e-payment notification facilities as well as obtain EMV chip-based payments cards from their respective LFIs without delay and exercise caution when sharing information that can be used to carry out e-payments.

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