Westpac NZ is partnering with IDCARE to help people and organisations deal with the complex and distressing aftermath of identity theft and financial crime.
The partnership will see Westpac refer customers to IDCARE for free specialist help, where expert identity and cyber security case managers can provide thorough and detailed advice on how to respond to data breaches, scams, identity theft, and cyber security concerns.
Westpac NZ Chief Risk Officer, Carolyn Kidd says working together with IDCARE will help reduce financial crime and the impact it has on people’s lives.
“We have a variety of systems and protections in place to prevent customers from losing their money, and in 2021 we successfully prevented over $40mil being lost to fraud and scams,” Ms Kidd says.
“Having your money stolen or identity fraudulently used is incredibly stressful, and many people need dedicated resource to understand and feel supported through the aftermath. Often, education is needed to prevent subsequent attacks and IDCARE specialises in providing that aid.
“Fraudsters and scammers are getting increasingly sophisticated, and we have dedicated teams working around the clock to keep Kiwis safe. While we prevent more and more financial crime every year, our customers can help keep themselves safe by staying vigilant at all times.”
Neil Hallett, New Zealand Operations Manager for IDCARE says it’s important to educate and support those impacted by scams and identity theft to make sure they can recognise and avoid them in future.
“Scam victims are likely to be targeted again and again by criminals, especially if they provided remote access to their device. By equipping them with knowledge and expert advice, we can reduce the harm they could be exposed to,” Mr Hallett says.
“While the financial impact of fraud and scams is well-understood, the effect on people’s wellbeing can also be profound. People often feel vulnerable, exploited and foolish for not spotting the scam, but the reality is that it can happen to anyone.
“Our job is to educate and empower our customers so they’re confident interacting online again.”
More information about IDCARE’s support services can be found here.
Westpac’s three top tips for keeping your money safe this summer
- Don’t open email or text links from people or organisations you don’t recognise.
- Never give out your personal or banking information online.
- If you see an offer that looks too good to be true, it probably is. Investigate it thoroughly.