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The role of personalised prevention strategies and support for scam victims

Amudha Karuppannan
Amudha Karuppannan

 Navigating the future of finance in the changing landscape of banking

Banks in Australia play a critical role in safeguarding customers’ money and personal information. With cyber threats rising across all sectors - the Australian Signals Directorate reports a rise of 23 percent in 2022-23 - banks recognise the gravity of scams and the potential consequences of data breaches, but so do their customers.

Australians also hold strong opinions regarding the measures that banks should adopt to protect their customers. The majority of people (83 percent) have a high level of confidence in their banks’ fraud prevention measures.

The reality of scam exposure

According to our research, more than half (55 percent) of Australians feel they have been targeted by a scam attack. This is comparable to The Australian Bureau of Statistics' figure of 65 percent of Australians targeted by scams in 2021-22. In our survey, email scams (25 percent) were the most common experience, followed by fraud or financial attacks (24 percent), password theft (14 percent) and identity theft (11 percent).

Those who identify as being in a "precarious" or "basic" financial situation were most likely to have been exposed to scams (74 percent and 57 percent respectively). While younger generations were found to have higher rates of exposure to scams, they’re less likely to follow through with a scam than older generations.

Understanding customer concerns and expectations

The high level of trust that people have in their banks’ security and scam prevention measures is critical as it impacts their relationship with customers. When prompted, half of Australians (50 percent) identify banks as being secure.

One of the most significant findings was that nearly all Australians (98%) expect banks to offer some sort of support if they fall victim to a scam. Currently, these expectations aren’t matched by the service they experience. Only 35 percent found their banks "completely helpful", 15 percent said the banks "did the minimum I expected", 6 percent found it hard to get any help, and a further 6 percent said they received no help at all.

Who foots the bill?​

Expectations vary for what banks should do to support customers who have been scammed, with 65%​ of Australians expecting a bank to replace lost money in the event of a scam.

Customers are looking for reassurance, accountability and financial security when they are scammed. Banks may be undermined on those criteria through no fault of their own.​

Strategies for personalised prevention and support

Banks need to close this expectation gap, and this includes educating customers on the areas where banks bear responsibility and where they can effectively intervene.

To better support customers, they need to use data effectively to identify risk factors and deploy a range of personalised intervention techniques depending on the situation. This should also include providing educational materials, pausing suspicious activity sooner, or assisting with next steps in the case of a scam.

With the number of Australians experiencing scam attacks on the rise, it’s imperative for banks to equip customers with knowledge to safeguard their money and data. Experiencing a scam is an emotionally charged event where customers value not only the outcome, but also the quality of assistance received. Banks must enhance their service with personalised support to meet expectations. This is critical in retaining customers and providing a meaningful customer lifecycle experience.

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Australia Customer Banking Report 2024
Diving into emerging trends reshaping the Australian banking industry

Amudha Karuppannan
Amudha Karuppannan
Senior Client Partner, Publicis Sapient

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