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Analysts warn of rise in financial fraud cases


A private cyber investigation company,  E-crime Bureau is cautioning of more financial fraud cases in Ghana by the end of 2017 if institutions fail to intensify the security of their operating systems.

The bureau’s claim comes on the back of reports of financial fraud which points to anincrease in such even as at July 2017.

According to the Principal Consultant of the e-Crime Bureau, AlexOppong, the development may be inevitable considering the rather sophisticated approach being adopted by the perpetrators of such crimes.

“People have been made more aware of the different frauds that have been committed and in the same way the fraudsters are moving the goal post and looking at better ways to try and defraud the system because as far as I am concerned trying to defraud a bank is always going to be an attractive action of fraud target so I do expect that those figures might go up,” he stated.

Though Mr. Oppong could not point to specific figures that indicate a surge in such crimes, he estimated at least a 40 percent rise in financial fraud cases if things go unresolved.

The caution also comes on the back of a report by the Bank of Ghana which has shown that all reported fraud cases by financial institutions, both successful and attempted amounted to approximately 244.32 million cedis.

The amount according to the central bank, constitutes 1001 fraud incidents in 2016 reported to the Bank of Ghana.

The report further explained that the main cases comprised suppression of customer accounts by staff of financial institutions, card fraud, forgery and alteration of documents, manipulation of accounts and negotiable instruments.

Majority of the reported cases (1,362) were complaints made by customers of Non-bank financial institutions, especially microfinance institutions.

This is followed by complaints made against universal banks and other financial institutions which amounted to 140 cases.

The least number of reported cases (20) were received from customers of rural and community banks.

These threats of increased fraud notwithstanding, Mr. Oppong believes financial institutions could be absolved from the effect should implicated institutions for instance guard their operations contrary to the prevailing weak cyber systems.

“…Especially if those who have been hit in the past from these fraud cases have not taken responsible approaches to tighten up the internal controls that have fallen through these kind of frauds,” he added.

By: Pius AmihereEduku/

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