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Which? calls on banks to come clean about APP fraud refunds

Which? calls on banks to come clean about APP fraud refunds

UK consumer group Which? is calling on banks and building societies to publish figures on the proportion of customers they refund for authorised push payment (APP) fraud.

APP scams have been on the rise during the Covid-19 pandemic, with losses hitting nearly half a billion pounds in 2020.

Many of the UK’s biggest banks and building societies are signed up a voluntary code, which is based on the principle that blameless victims of bank transfer scams should be reimbursed their losses.

However, the firms have been reluctant to say how many customers they have refunded.

Barclays has become the first to publish figures, revealing that it reimbursed 74% of customers who fell victim to APP fraud in the first two months of this year. TSB is not signed up to the code but says it refunds 99% of victims.

Figures released by the Lending Standards Board, which oversees the voluntary code, show that banks only reimburse a minority of fraud victims. Between May 2019, when the code was introduced, and July 2020, banks ruled that 77% of fraud victims were partially or fully to blame for their losses.

In 60% of cases, customers were found to be fully at fault and thus liable for their losses. Victims were only considered blameless in 11% of cases.

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