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Abu Dhabi Police Warning about Phishing Scam

Recently, a South African lady has been deceived of more than R10, 000 in an e-mail scam designed to defraud online banking users.

In the beginning of March 2010, Jane Kennedy, 40, based in Durban received an e-mail that claimed to be coming from Absa Bank (South Africa). In the e-mail, she was asked to disclose and verify her PIN code and banking details for some alleged "security reasons".

Narrating the incident how she was scammed, Kennedy stated that she was tired and in a hurry that day and was trapped by scammers, reported iol.co.za on March 23, 2010. She said that the people she replied to were not from the bank's security division but fraudsters.

The lady said that she was persuaded by the Absa bank's letterhead, which made her believe that the e-mail was genuine, and she responded to it. Just after that, she received a call from the fraud department of the bank, which informed her that she had been a fraud victim and suggested her to visit the nearest ATM machine and then to go straightaway to a police station. At the ATM, Kennedy discovered around five withdrawals made from her savings account.

The victim lady stated that no notification over phone was given to warn her about those transactions. When she inquired why she was not informed by cellphone, she received the answer that her number had been changed to some bogus number on the bank's computer system.

Phishing scams and related incidents of identity theft are constantly increasing, posing a serious threat to the security of Internet banking users. Seeing such attacks, Absa has come forward and is urging its customers to know more about phishing scams.

Moreover, by following certain simple steps, the incidents like Kennedy's could easily be evaded. Customers should be cautious about such type of e-mails and URLs, they should strictly avoid visiting any link in these e-mails and in no case they should enter their personal/financial details.

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