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BNZ Reports No Losses – Phishing Scam Update

21 October 2005
Media release – for immediate release

Bank of New Zealand Reports No Losses – Phishing Scam Update

Bank of New Zealand restored full functionality to its Internet banking site this afternoon, after some customers were targeted in a phishing scam yesterday.

The Bank’s Internet banking platform has not been compromised and remains secure, but unfortunately the fraudsters convinced a very small number of customers to disclose their personal information, and it is those customers who are potentially at risk.

Investigations to date indicate that no customer has suffered any loss as a result of this scam.

As part of the restoration to full services the Bank has:

- Revised daily transaction limits for Internet banking customers

- Suspended Internet banking access for those customers who have advised the Bank they have responded to the scam email, and are therefore at risk

These measures are for the protection of our customers, including anyone who may have responded to the scam and is yet to contact us, says Bank of New Zealand Chief Information Officer, Peter Fletcher.

“We are putting these measures in place to provide an opportunity for those customers who may have responded to the fraudulent email to make contact with us so that we can facilitate new access codes and passwords.

“Many of our customers rely on Internet banking to help them run their businesses and personal finances, and restoring access with revised limits will allow the vast majority of our customers to get on with things.

“The revised limits are suitable for most of our customers, but there may be some customers whose needs are different, so we will be working proactively with them to manage this change.

“We recognise this may be an inconvenience for some customers, but we are taking these steps to protect all of our customers and we once again thank people for their cooperation and understanding at this time.

“Our customers can have confidence that everything that can be done, is being done to safeguard their funds and their electronic identity.”

Since the fake website was discovered, the Bank has moved quickly in response, working closely with:

- New Zealand Police

- Internet Service Providers

- Other Banks

- International Law Enforcement Agencies

The Bank also took its Internet banking website offline temporarily yesterday, before restoring it with restricted functionality around 9pm last night. The move to full functionality has been done after a full appraisal of the situation.

“We have been monitoring the traffic on our Internet banking site over the past 24 hours, and have the ability to stop any transaction that we believe to be suspect.

“We ask anyone that has concerns that they may have disclosed their identity to please call our Customer Solutions Advisors on 0800 275 269 or +64 4 494 9098 from overseas.”

Bank of New Zealand reiterates that it would never ask customers to disclose confidential information such as logon and password details and customers should not respond to such requests.


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