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Public Vigilence Needed To Combat Email Hoax

Greater Public Vigilence Needed To Combat Hoax Email Threat

A hoax email distributed today seeking to trick bank customers into revealing their account and password details illustrates the changing landscape which is now commonplace for New Zealand companies and their customers, the Bank of New Zealand said today.

“Fake emails and other spam messages are commonplace overseas and are now more prevalent in New Zealand,” Shona Bishop, General Manager of Marketing at Bank of New Zealand, said.

“Almost every bank in Australia and New Zealand has had to deal with hoax emails and fake websites of this kind. Bank security is strong. To be frank, it’s customer behaviour that’s the issue. We strongly remind our customers not to ignore the advice they are regularly given by the Bank to protect their account and password details.

“All companies and their customers need to take the threat of identity fraud seriously. This latest hoax email is a timely reminder for the public to never reveal their account and password details to anyone. People need to understand the Bank of New Zealand would never ask customers to click on a link and type in their log-in details.”

Hoax email scams seek to drive customers to fake websites and then convince them to provide bank account logo-on and PIN numbers, enabling the customer’s account to be accessed.

“We became aware of the hoax email at around 10am,” Shona Bishop said.

“We have had a number of calls to our contact centre from customers reporting that they had received an email directing them to what they thought was a genuine Bank of New Zealand website. We are advising customers to:

• Delete the email without opening it
• Under no circumstances follow the links to the website
• Not to provide confidential information like access codes or PIN numbers.

“We have taken measures to restrict the ability of criminals to fraudulently move money from accounts as a result of a customer providing their account and PIN details. We have posted alerts on our website and all BNZ internet banking customers will receive an email when they log-on to our website.

“We will provide additional information for customers via our website – www.bnz.co.nz – as it comes to hand.”

If any customer has concerns about their Bank of New Zealand accounts or suspect they have responded to a fraudulent email, please call our Customer Solutions Advisors on 0800 275 269 or +64 4 494 9098 from overseas – international toll charges apply.

“Customers looking for additional security when conducting internet banking should register for NetGuard, the Bank’s second factor authentication service. NetGuard is a plastic card that fits in a wallet. The service is free and customers can order it on our website and have it delivered within a week.”

Ends

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