Banks lost N12bn to robbery, fraud in six months – CBN - PUNCH
BY Nike Popoola
Losses recorded by banks from armed robbery cases and other criminal activities perpetrated by members of staff and non-staff members of lending institutions rose to N12bn in six months.
Figures obtained from the Central Bank of Nigeria stated that the attempted fraud and forgery cases, which were, however, not successful, stood at a figure of N7.99bn between January and June 2018.
The CBN said that there was a staggering rise in the reported cases of such incidences from 16,762 in the first half of the financial year of 2017 to 20,768 in the corresponding period of 2018.
It said, “There were 20,768 reported cases of fraud and forgery (attempted and successful), valued at N19.77bn in the review period, compared with 16,762 cases, involving N5.52bn and $ 0.12m in the corresponding period of 2017.
“The actual loss by banks to fraud and forgery, however, amounted to N12.06bn, compared with the N0.78bn and $0.03m suffered in the first half of 2017.”
The apex bank said the cases involved armed robbery attacks, fraudulent Automated Teller Machine withdrawals, defalcation, illegal funds transfer, pilfering of cash, stealing, suppression and conversion of customers’ deposits.
As banks invest in their services to ensure that their technical systems are protected and secure, they have also continued to enlighten customers on how to stay safe with their deposits because fraudsters are also becoming more sophisticated in the way they gain access into different bank accounts.
The banks have continued to have their share of the effects of insecurity challenges in the country as a result of reported cases of armed robbery attacks on them, situations in which robbers had carted away unspecified amount of money.
One of the major costly attacks on banks this year, which did not only lead to loss of lives, was the incidence in April when armed gangs invaded five banks and wreaked havoc in Offa, Kwara State.
Notwithstanding the risks in the economy and financial sector, the CBN noted that under its surveillance, it would continue to accord priority to the safety of the institutions.
In that regard, it added that the CBN/Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation joint risk-based assessment of banks was conducted to ascertain the quality of risk assets and adequacy of loan loss provisions.
“Also, risk-based examinations of specialised institutions, including the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria and three credit bureaux, were carried out,” the CBN added.