NatWest is now allowing customers to set their own daily digital bank transfer limits - a move designed to reduce the damage done by APP scams.
NatWest, Royal Bank of Scotland and Ulster Bank currently set a default bank transfer limit of £20,000 per day but this will be reduced to £5000 per day.
Customers can then log in to their online accounts and, using a card reader, tweak this daily transfer limit, making it lower than £5000 or higher - up to £20,000. NatWest says that 95% of its customers have never paid someone else more than £5000.
Consumer group Which? has welcomed the move. It has asked other lenders if they plan to follow NatWest's lead; Nationwide and Virgin Money are considering the option but others are not.
Which? says personalised payment caps could help tackle APP scams, which have been on the rise during the Covid-19 pandemic, with losses hitting nearly half a billion pounds in 2020.
While fraudsters can manipulate people to adjust transfer limits, letting customers set their own ‘normal’ behaviour and creating greater friction is "generally positive," as it gives banks another opportunity to warn users about fraud or intervene if they think something is wrong, says Which?.
NatWest says that it "also helps in a situation where a fraudster has taken control of a customer’s account as without the card reader they would not be able to increase the daily transfer limit".