Following today’s deadline into the Biometric Verification Number (BVN) registration project, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said fraudsters may have begun unfolding their scripts to fleece unsuspecting bank customers of their valuable.
Meanwhile, in a last minute rush, banks in Lagos and Ogun States were yesterday besieged by customers, to beat the deadline.
The compulsory registration was extended by three months from June 30, 2015 to October 31 to avail thousands of Nigerians to participate in the exercise.
According to the CBN, from November 1, defaulters would be barred from bank transactions.
A statement from the banking industry regulator, said some fraudsters have started sending unsolicited mails and text messages to bank customers alerting them to the deactivation or suspension of their bank accounts due to uncompleted BVN registration process as well as directing them what next to do.
The statement, signed by the Director of Communications Department, CBN, Alhaji Ibrahim Mu’azu, read in part: “An example of such messages reads thus: ‘Dear customer, due to the new BVN policy by the CBN, your account has been deactivated and to reactivate, call……”
A source at the apex bank affirmed that the fraudsters would always want to try something new in every development in the industry, knowing that any mistake from the customers would eventually enrich them illegally.
“As we speak, those fraudulent text and e-mail messages have started and don’t be surprised that someone, somewhere has responded, especially those with valuables in their accounts, due to curiosity and lack of proper consultations,” the source said.
CBN said those messages were intended to lure bank account holders to reveal their personal details with which the fraudsters could use to defraud them.
“The public is therefore warned that neither the Central Bank of Nigeria and deposit money banks nor their employees or agents would ever call bank customers or send e-mail/text messages requesting for passwords, card details or personal identification number (PIN).
“Bank customers are therefore, advised to personally visit their banks for any issue requiring disclosure of personal bank details,” the statement said.
As at 7:00am, customers were seen loitering around banks in Abule-Egba area of Lagos State, pending when they will open for the day’s business.
A woman, Mrs. Bukola Taiwo, who came from Agbado-crossing area with her two children, to Guaranteed Trust Bank, Abule Egba told The Guardian that she left home at 6:30am but despite that she was the 16th person on the queue.
“I was here yesterday (Thursday) but because I waited for longer hours that was why I decided to come early today. But despite denying myself of sleep and my children, see what I met here,” she said.
Source: The Guardian Nigeria