The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Wednesday predicted that E-fraud loses will reach N6.1 trillion by the year 2021.
This was made known by S.K. Salam-Alada, who is the Director of Consumer Protection Department, CBN, at the workshop for business editors and finance correspondents association of Nigeria (FICAN) by the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) in Benin on Wednesday.
Salam-Alada, who was represented by Emmanuel Hassan, the Deputy Director of the Consumer Protection Department of the CBN, said: “We need to restore public trust and confidence in the financial system because of the problems of malfunction in our e-channels and electronic fraud (e-fraud).”
According to him, the Consumer Protection Framework (CPF) by the CBN is supposed to not only engender public confidence in the financial system, but also guarantee high standards for efficient customer service delivery, market discipline and ensure that consumers are treated fairly by financial institutions regulated by the CBN.
“Innovation technology is increasing rapidly and disrupting the financial space. We no longer go to our banks physically as often as we did in the past for financial transactions.
“It is interesting to note that Nigeria is among the first countries in the world to adopt the chip and PIN methods of financial transactions verification when other countries were still considering it.
“Nigeria adopted the Real-Time Payment (RTP) in 2016; this is a remarkable feat,” he said.
He further added that: “In 2016, customers transacted electronically up to a volume of 869 million translating in value to N69.1 trillion. In 2017, the volume of e-transactions was 1.4 billion which translated to N97.4 trillion in value.
“Fraud is a major issue on Consumer Protection. In 2016, 19,531 cases of fraud were reported by Deposit Money Banks (DMBs); in 2017, 25,043 cases of fraud were reported by DMBs.
“There was a 28% increase in reported fraud cases from 2016 to 2017, and an actual loss of N1.63bn lost to fraud in 2017.
“Every year, fraud cases have been increasing with 83% of it perpetrated through electronic means while 17% were via non-electronic means.”
Concerning the achievements of the CBN with respect to consumer protection, Salam-Alada, explained that a total of 13,715 complaints have been resolved in recent times resulting to the refund of N66.5bn, $18.5m, €26,319.03 and £9,085.98.
Dr. Uju Ogubunka, who is the president of Bank Customers Association of Nigeria said that: “I believe that consumers are partially protected.
“The challenge is for the banks to recognize the right(s) of the consumers and to uphold and respect these right(s). There is much to be done concerning consumer protection.”