ANZ staffers used fake facebook profile to spy on customers

ANZ staffers used fake facebook profile to spy on customers

ANZ is investigating allegations that members of its debt collection department set up a fake facebook profile in order to befriend customers with bad credit and track down their current contact details.

'Max Bourke', described as a single guy who enjoyed footy, poker and running on the beach, managed to make 80 friends before his profile was suddenly removed from the social network following a report by Fairfax newspapers.

ANZ has confirmed that several members of its debt collection department in Melbourne are facing disciplinary action over the incident.

Bank spokesman Paul Edwards told AAP that the social media sting was a rogue operation by an individual or group of people and not an officially sanctioned or widespread activity at the bank.

"Clearly where we're not being transparent, where we're not being open within our dealings with customers, that's just completely unacceptable," he said.

Consumer rights advocates say ANZ bank employees may have breached privacy laws and the Trade Practices Act if they used Facebook to gather customers' information and that victims of the sting may be able to take action against the bank for engaging in deceptive practices and harassment.

Comments: (1)

Brett King
Brett King - Moven - New York 27 May, 2010, 04:36Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

This shows the fundamental problem with Bank marketing departments these days - they still think in terms of traditional ATL/BTL broadcast methods and don't understand that social media is not about managing brand perception so much as participating in the conversation.