KUCHING (July 11): Sarawak’s Democratic Action Party (DAP) chairman Chong Chieng Jen is demanding an explanation from the federal finance minister on measures to prevent devastating incidents of internet bank fraud.
In a statement released yesterday, he said that due to the recent incidents and the banks’ alleged refusal to take responsibility for these cases of fraud, he had submitted three parliamentary questions on the subject for the next parliamentary session.
“My questions are as follows: first, to ask the Minister of Finance to indicate the total amount of money that has been transferred from the accounts of bank depositors without their knowledge for 2021 and 2022.
“Second, to request the Minister to indicate what measures the government and Bank Negara will take to address the widespread internet banking fraud and fraudulent withdrawals of internet deposits from depositors’ accounts and what the government will do to restore public confidence. in the security of their deposits in banks.
“Thirdly, request the Minister to provide statistics of complaints lodged with the Financial Services Ombudsman and the Ombudsman’s decisions on those complaints, including the percentage of decisions favoring the banks or the complainants,” he said.
He said the questions are expected to be presented to parliament on July 25-26 for the finance minister’s oral response.
In the face of rampant internet bank fraud cases where depositors’ money was withdrawn from their accounts via the internet and without their knowledge, Chong said it was most irresponsible of a finance minister to stay absolutely silent on this issue.
He said that currently the public is worried about their money in the bank, not knowing when they will fall victim to these internet banking frauds and their life savings will be gone.
He revealed that small entrepreneurs, bank managers, former bank officers, retired civil servants and teachers have approached him to seek his help in this matter.
Some have seen their savings transferred without their knowledge and without authorization, some have even had their fixed deposit stolen, some have had their credit card debited without their knowledge and without their authorization, and when they informed the bank in the first instance, the bank still insisted that they pay the fraudulently debited amount, he added.
“Despite all their apprehensions, there are two common characteristics; whether it’s money stolen from their accounts or their credit cards debited without their knowledge, all of these crimes have been committed via the Internet, and banks will invariably push the blame and losses onto depositors or cardholders. map.
“Given their diverse backgrounds, their misfortune made it clear to us that anyone can fall victim to these internet banking frauds. banks will simply adopt a “it’s none of my business and I don’t care” attitude and pass all losses on to their customers.
“In the past, we thought banks were the safest place to keep our hard-earned money. Now even the banks are not safe. Where will that leave us, an innocent and defenseless audience? He asked.