21 March 2024

Customers asked to be on alert as impersonation scams continue to evolve

HSBC is warning customers to be aware of an evolving form of impersonation scams that asks customers to uninstall banking apps from their devices to access their funds.

Increasingly scammers are reaching out to potential victims through cold calls, SMS messages, and social media claiming that an urgent account issue such as a recent transaction or a problem with the device needs to be resolved.

Scammers will then often ask customers to log into their banking app, remove security measures such as Face ID and to uninstall the app from their device. The scammer will then download the banking app onto their own device and ask for personal information and a one-time password (OTP) to authorise the installation and access their account.

According to Jessica Power, Head of Wealth and Personal Banking HSBC Australia, customers should be suspicious of any message that asks them to remove or install apps on your device as your bank will never ask you do to this. Your bank will never ask you to transfer money to a ‘safe’ account, download software, or remotely access your device.

“HSBC staff will never ask you to verbally share a code, PIN or password with them. If you receive an unsolicited phone call or text message purporting to be from your bank, please contact your bank immediately through the phone number listed on the website,” she said.

HSBC Australia

In Australia, the HSBC Group offers an extensive range of financial services through a network of 29 branches and offices. These services include retail and commercial banking, trade finance, treasury and financial markets, payments and cash management and securities custody. Principal HSBC Group members operating in Australia include HSBC Bank Australia Limited (ABN 48 006 434 162 AFSL/Australian Credit Licence 232595) and The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited (ABN 65 117 925 970 and AFSL 301737).

HSBC Holdings plc

HSBC Holdings plc, the parent company of HSBC, is headquartered in London. HSBC serves customers worldwide from offices in 62 countries and territories. With assets of US$3,039bn at 31 December 2023, HSBC is one of the world’s largest banking and financial services organisations.

Media enquiries:

Jacqui Coleman
E-mail: jacqui.coleman@hsbc.com.au

Lillian Birchall
E-mail: lillian.birchall@hsbc.com.au