National Fraud Awareness Week is beginning on Monday, 21 September, 2020.  FraudSMART is a fraud awareness initiative developed by the Banking & Payments Federation of Ireland (BPFI) in conjunction with AIB Bank, Bank Of Ireland, KBC Ireland, permanent tsb, Ulster Bank and An Post Money.

This year the primary focus is on combatting the activity of Money Mules. Money mules are required to facilitate the movement of stolen money through bank accounts. Criminals may try to recruit Money Mules in many ways including Social Media messages, fake job advertisements, fake online posts, instant messaging posts/requests and direct communication with an offer of financial reward.

A recent trend has shown many teenagers and students becoming embroiled in this type of activity. Anyone involved in Money Mule activity risks Criminal prosecution and conviction.

The objective of the focus is to raise awareness of the criminal nature of Money Mule activity and how people can be recruited. It outlines what to look for, advising parents/guardians to check out information and education advisories, to recognise potential Money Mule activity and thereby help prevent involvement in criminal activity.

The key campaign message is “If someone asks you to move money through your Bank account in exchange for cash they are asking you to be a “Money Mule”.

Permanent tsb has been fully engaged with development of this campaign. In addition to the brochures “Protect Yourself From Financial Fraud” and “Protect Your Business From Fraud” two online leaflets have been developed  “Advice and Warning signs for Parents/Guardians about the Dangers of Money Mules” and “Advice and Warning signs for Second and Third Level Students About Money Mules” which can be found here.

FraudSMART.ie is a website which has some excellent advice for both personal and business customers. There is also a facility to register to receive up to date fraud alerts which is highly recommended.

In addition BPFI have also developed Facebook and Twitter pages:

  • Facebook @FraudSMART
  • Twitter @FraudSMART

We would encourage everyone to log on, like, share and re-tweet and help us to make family and friends fraud aware.

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