Free is always better than fee, right?

Bank customers often do not understand banking fees and are surprised sometimes at what certain retail banking transactions cost. Nobody likes surprises when it comes to bank fees, which is why online banking has become very popular.

It has, in fact, become so widespread that customers expect to access bank online services free of charge. Many banks too only operate online today which, on the other hand, enables them to decrease overheads and offer more competitive rates.

African Bank customers are reaping the benefits of transacting free of charge on our online platforms. Our mobile banking app and banking online are free-to-use. Registering for online banking is also free.

The advantages of online banking are numerous and the reason most people demand it today is because it suits our busy lifestyles.

African Bank’s Omni-channel platform, for example, allows you to start a transaction on your cellphone through the African Bank App over a cup of coffee on the way to work. You can then return to complete that transaction on your laptop via our website later in the day, when you have a break.

This type of convenience has revolutionised the way people interact with their bank – no more dreading having to go into the bank on the 25th of the month or early on a Saturday morning, just to make sure you get in and out before the queue becomes unbearable.

The bottom line is: when you access bank online services, there are no office hours! You can bank 24 hours a day from anywhere in the world, using phone banking with a mobile banking app or banking online from your laptop, tablet or desktop. 

Some of the services you can do on the go (while lying in bed if you like) are: Register for online banking, change your password, apply for a loan, open a bank account, change your PIN, update your details, apply for phone banking and request statements.

To ensure this form of banking remains safe, banks have put a lot of money into security technologies. This involves things like firewalls, encryption, verifying of account activity, safety features and constantly warning customers about how to avoid cyber scams, like phishing.

This is when criminals pose as a trusted source, like your bank, to obtain personal information such as passwords and credit card details — ultimately, the aim is to get money out of your account. They commonly phone and pose as a bank employee or send an email which you think is legitimately from the bank.

A typical part of the ploy is to get you to click on a link in an email, which leads to a hoax website designed to look almost exactly like your bank’s.

While online scams are prevalent, there are a lot of other crimes related to banking.

According to the Banking Association South Africa, these are the most common:

  • ATM fraud
  • Card fraud
  • Card skimming theft
  • Cash theft
  • Change of bank account details scams
  • Cheque fraud scams
  • Identity/personal information fraud
  • Phishing scams
  • Point of Sale theft
  • Vehicle account rescue scams

African Bank would like to remind you that while every effort is taken from our side to protect your information while using our online platforms, the onus is also on you to always transact securely and with caution.

The Banking Association SA has many valuable tips to help you avoid falling victim to bank crime. Read them here.

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