Ulster Bank survey : Only half of people are confident that they could detect a potential scam

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Ulster Bank survey : Only half of people are confident that they could detect a potential scam

Ulster Bank today released the findings of its fraud survey, which questioned people on their attitudes and experience of keeping their money safe. The results showed that only half (54%) of respondents are confident that they could identify a potential scam.

Of those who know how many online passwords they have, 45% have less than four, and just half of respondents describe their passwords as ‘strong’. The survey sought views on a range of issues including banking habits, attitudes to data security and personal information, and knowledge of the different types of fraud.

45% of respondents claim that their bank has contacted them about suspicious activity on their account e.g. when using a card abroad to verify the transaction or if an excessive amount was spent. 27% of respondents have given their bank account details to friends or family over the phone.

Commenting, Chris Wilson, Managing Director of Retail Banking at Ulster Bank said;

“We are in a whole new age of what it means and what you need to do to keep your money safe. Fraud and scams are important subjects to talk about so that customers are aware of security and how to keep their money safe. We feel strongly about playing our part in ensuring customers are kept as safe and secure as possible.”

PINs and Passwords

A quarter of respondents (25%) use the same PIN for the ATM as they do for their credit card, with 16% using the same PIN for online banking, 15% using it to unlock their mobile phone and 5% using it for their house alarm. Just half rate their online passwords as ‘strong’, and over 90% of passwords contain either lowercase letters (92%), numbers (92%) or capital letters (85%). 43% of those surveyed use passwords containing symbols. 14% of respondents record their passwords in a diary while 52% don’t record their passwords anywhere.


While 76% of respondents say they know what malware is, just 16% are ‘very confident’ in their ability to identify an email containing malware. However, the survey findings demonstrate a high degree of vigilance among respondents when it comes to monitoring their bank accounts.

  • 86% regularly monitor their own bank account for unusual activity.
  • 83% heed the warning to cover the keypad when inputting their PIN at the ATM.
  • 62% worry about giving personal details when shopping or booking flights online.
  • 81% agree that fraud could happen to anyone, regardless of age or digital literacy.

Ulster Bank is the only bank with a dedicated Community Protection Advisor who travels around the country, meeting customers face to face and in community groups to talk about fraud and provide after care and support, if the fraud or scam has already taken place.

Ulster Bank’s Community Protection Advisor, Denise Cusack said:

“Ulster Bank takes fraud very seriously and it’s our priority to keep customers safe and secure regardless of how they bank with us. We have robust technology and monitoring in place to protect customers and to educate them about how they can protect themselves too. The findings of the survey show that while respondents have a healthy attitude to fraud prevention, we need to continue to be vigilant and educate ourselves. Ulster Bank will never ask you for your full PIN and password and you should not share these details with anyone. We will never ask our customers for any personal information by email. If you do encounter suspicious behaviour, contact our dedicated fraud and scams team immediately.”

Article Published: 03/10/2017