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Major Australian Banks crack down on crypto scams



National Australia Bank (NAB) is blocking funds transfers to high-risk crypto exchanges following an analysis that raised scam concerns. The institution and other major lenders in the country have restricted payments to some cryptocurrency exchanges.

The banking organization announced that it was introducing new customer protections for transactions on digital asset platforms, where scams are more common. National Australia Bank (NAB) is one of the four largest banks in Australia.

An analysis revealed by the bank showed that NAB customers abandon payments worth about $184 million daily, raising scam concerns. This accounted for the period between March and July of this year. Recently, within 30 days, almost half of the scam alerts received by the Australian Financial Crimes Exchange were related to cryptocurrencies. In 2022, Australians lost over $150 million in crypto-related scams.

While several measures introduced by NAB have proved effective over the last six months, Chris Sheehan, NAB executive for group investigations and fraud, stated that the firm will go further to block payments to high-risk cryptocurrency exchanges. Alongside payment prompt features introduced by the bank, this recent effort is an additional method to protect customers from scammers.

The payment prompts have helped customers pause and think before completing payments; however, “many customers ultimately complete their payment after receiving a prompt,” Sheehan said. Additionally, the extra friction was intended to alert customers to warning signs, the executive added.

The development is a welcomed idea by Australians, as revealed in a survey that shows that “four in 10 Australians are ‘extremely willing’ for payments to be slower if they were better protected from scammers.”

The NAB executive, Sheehan, also highlighted that scammers use cryptocurrency platforms to send stolen funds faster and often overseas.

Due to scam mitigation, three other major Australian banks — Westpac Banking Corp., Commonwealth Bank, and Australia & New Zealand Banking Group — came up with similar measures ahead of NAB.

Read also; 

Telegram Sells Bonds for $210 Million to Boost Financial Stability

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