Mbika Tony Emeka, a Rivers State resident, has recounted how he lost N158,000 to a fraudster who disguised as a customer care agent of the United Bank for Africa (UBA) on Facebook.
Emeka told FIJ that the incident happened on November 27 after reaching out to the fake bank representative to make some inquiries.
“The person asked for my card details, first card number, last card number and account number. I waited for a response, but I did not get it,” said Emeka.
The UBA customer said he decided to check his account balance after an hour of waiting for the Facebook user to respond to him, only to discover that N158,000 had disappeared from it.
Before the incident, Emeka had gone to UBA Trans-Amadi branch in Port Harcourt for his debit card.
At the bank, when he asked the operational manager how to initiate a WhatsApp chat with UBA’s virtual assistant, the manager told him he should chat with an assistant on Facebook because “WhatsApp chat with UBA is now fake”.
Following the loss of her money, Emeka went to the same branch on the morning of November 28 to report the incident and ask for a refund.
He told FIJ that the same operational manager told him that the page he had interacted with was a fake one.
He, however, instructed one of the bank officials to block his account and investigate the matter, after which he was told to return on November 30.
“When I got there, they told me they had tracked the money to one limited liability company and asked me if I did any transfer to such an account, but I said no. I never made any transfer,” said Emeka.
“After that, they said I should give them ten working days to get back to me.”
When FIJ contacted UBA, the bank wrote, “Kindly be informed that there are sensitisations in place for our customers via our various social media platforms and their personal email addresses, advising them against divulging their sensitive account information to third parties.
“Please note that UBA will never call you or send you a message to ask you for your personal banking details like account or card number, passwords, PINs, OTP, etc. We strongly advise that you do not engage or respond to such calls or messages. Thank you.”
On Tuesday, FIJ revealed that scammers were disguising as customer care representatives of various Nigerian banks on Twitter to defraud unsuspecting customers. This followed the discovery of several counterfeit bank handles on the microblogging platform.
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