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Bendigo Bank blocks high-risk crypto payments to protect customers

31 July 2023 |Announcements

Bendigo Bank is blocking high-risk cryptocurrency transactions as part of its ongoing efforts to protect its customers from fraud and financial crime.

The new rules targeting high-risk instant payments to cryptocurrency exchanges are designed to address fraudulent payments and further enhance protection for Bendigo Bank’s 2.3 million customers.

The new rules are in addition to a tightening of transaction rules implemented earlier this year, which are already helping address the issue.

The latest changes will primarily target investment scams, which have already cost Australians almost $200 million this year, according to Scamwatch.

“Investment scams can be highly sophisticated, very convincing and financially devastating. Nearly half of all investment scams reported in 2022 resulted in a financial loss, so it’s vital we do all that we can to stop them,” said Jason Gordon, Head of Fraud at Bendigo Bank.

Investment scams are a prominent feature of the cyber-crime landscape because of the large amounts of money involved. Scammers use cryptocurrency because funds are challenging to recover. Money can quickly be sent overseas and is hard to trace.

“Our risk-based approach will add some friction to certain genuine payments, however it's our responsibility to put measures in place that protect customers from bad actors,” Mr Gordon said.

This latest fraud and scam prevention measure joins a host of others employed by Bendigo Bank against cyber and financial crime, including:

  • multi-factor authentication
  • the removal of all links in SMS messages from the Bank
  • a dedicated security team constantly monitoring for suspicious activity
  • unusual account activity detection.

Customers play a vital role in the fight against fraud, by remaining alert to suspicious messages and securing their personal information, Mr Gordon said.

“While we take significant measures to protect accounts, together with our customers, we can even further reduce the incidents of scams and fraud,” said Mr Gordon.

“Please remember the Bank will never ask for your details, or to transfer money, download software or login via a link sent through email or SMS. Bendigo Bank has removed links from all our SMS messages, so customers who receive an SMS that includes a link should treat that as suspicious.”

“If you are speaking to someone claiming to be from Bendigo Bank and you are unsure if the caller is legitimate, hang up and contact us directly on 1300 236 344,” Mr Gordon said.
Bendigo Bank recommends stopping scammers in their tracks by following Scamwatch’s advice:

  1. STOP – Don’t give money or personal information to anyone if unsure.
    Scammers will offer to help you or ask you to verify who you are. They will pretend to be from organisations you know and trust like Services Australia, police, government, or a fraud service.
  2. THINK – Ask yourself could the message or call be fake?
    Never click a link in a message. Only contact us, businesses or government using contact information from their official website or through their secure apps. If you’re not sure, say no, hang up or delete.
  3. PROTECT – Act quickly if something feels wrong.
    If you notice unusual activity or if a scammer gets your money or information, visit to report it and get support.

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