Internet banking

Online banking can be a fast and convenient way to carry out financial transactions. It is important to protect yourself online, including your personal and financial details, against scammers.

Protect yourself when banking online

Taking the following steps will help to protect you when banking online.

  1. Before you start, ensure your computer, tablet or phone is secure by installing or updating firewall, anti-virus and anti-spyware software. Always log out after each session and clear your browsing history.
  2. Choose a unique, secure password with a combination of letters and numbers that no one could guess.
  3. Never show or tell anyone your PIN or password and destroy any paper records of these carefully.
  4. Check that the web address is correct and the site is not a fake. Make sure the site is secure—look for a web address beginning with ‘https’ and a closed padlock symbol. If in doubt, contact your bank about the security processes you need to use.
  5. Regularly check your banking statements to spot any scams activity. If you think that your banking or financial details have been compromised, contact your bank or financial institution immediately.
  6. Never transfer money through your account for people you don’t know. These requests are usually from criminals wanting you to transfer stolen money overseas. Money laundering is illegal.

Don't give out personal details

Never give out your personal, credit card or online account details:

  • over the phone, unless you made the phone call and got the number from a trusted source
  • through an email or while chatting online.

Never respond to emails or phone calls from someone claiming to be your bank and asking for account details. Genuine banks or financial institutions never do this. This is what scammers do to steal your identity and your money. If this happens:

  • immediately delete the email without clicking on any links that could activate malware malicious software designed to steal personal details from your computer files, and report the email to your bank
  • ask for the telephone caller’s name and number and say you’ll call back later. Immediately contact your bank using the official telephone number to ask if the call was genuine and if not, report the scam.

Online banking scams

Phishing scams are a popular method used to gain your financial details. Scammers send emails or SMS messages that appear to be from your bank, a financial institution or an online payment service. They usually claim that there is a problem with your account and request that you verify your details on a fake but convincing copy of the bank’s website.

Card skimming is the copying of information from the magnetic strip of a credit card or ATM card. Scammers skim your card by putting a discreet attachment on an ATM or EFTPOS machine. They may even install a camera to capture your pin. Once your card is skimmed, scammers can create copies and make charges to your account.

Credit card scammers aim to steal your credit card details either by taking the card or by tricking you into giving your card’s details. Immediately cancel lost or stolen credit cards and beware of card-not-present fraud, where scammers use your details to pay for things online or over the phone. Keep a close eye on your credit card statements to help you pick this up if it happens.

Visit our Scamwatch website


More information

Banking and credit card scams
Online shopping