Banks Are To The Blame For Negligence As Robbers Visit Homes With POS Machines – Nigerians
Nigerians on Monday said banks were to blame for the rise in the use of Point of Sale (PoS) terminals by robbers to dispossess people of their money – a trend that has been going on for a while without a solution yet in sight.
Recently, there have been reported cases of robbers snatching people’s Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cards to withdraw money, using PoS device to accomplish their criminal acts.
The process is usually the same. The robbers break into a house at night or any time of the day. And with guns held to their heads, victims are ordered to furnish their ATM cards as well as disclose their pin numbers, which are then confirmed with a PoS device before the cards are taken away. The robbers then proceed to withdraw as much cash as possible before daybreak when the incident is reported and cash withdrawal stopped.
This trend is also common in robbery in mass transit buses popularly called ‘one chance’ where unsuspecting commuters are held hostage, ordered to surrender their ATM cards and disclose their personal identification number (PIN) – with the PoS terminal to authenticate the PIN – before heading to a convenient ATM terminal and empty the victims’ bank accounts.
During the latest robbery incidents in parts of Lagos and Ogun states as a result of the ongoing lockdown, a victim, Adeleke Adesola, said robbers who visited his home, after collecting his phone, forced him to surrender his three ATM cards and their pin numbers at gunpoint.
“They pointed a gun to my head and asked me to give them the pins to my ATM cards. They came with a PoS machine and slotted in the ATM cards to verify if the pins were correct.
“After they left, I was able to reach out to two of my banks to block my accounts. They asked me some questions about my accounts which I answered and they blocked the accounts. The robbers transferred N31, 000 from my account.”
Another tenant, Olumide Abimbola, stated that the gangsters robbed him and his wife of two phones and N30,000, adding that they transferred the N10,000 in his bank account.
Speaking on the issue, Prof. Itse Sagay (SAN), Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), said banks should be held responsible if robbers could go about dispossessing people of their hard-earned money through use of PoS terminals.
“I think the banks will have some responsibilities for it, in the sense that there has to be some qualifications for which such transfers are made. There must be a system for which that sort of thing can be stopped. This electronic banking has become an Achilles heel of the Nigerian financial system because it is being abused rampantly. But I think the banks should do more about it. Not only that, the police should be more vigilant.”
Yinka Odumakin, National Publicity Secretary of Afenifere, said banks deserved blame as they ought to have put measures in place to checkmate criminal activities.
The banks should have put in measures to prevent this kind of situation from happening. The banks bear some blame owing to negligence in this regard. But more importantly, we should know that Nigeria is the world secretariat of poverty. You can’t just lock people down at home and not expect this kind of things. We are not a serious country.
Hon. Kamal Ayinde Bayewu, fellow of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria and former senatorial aspirant in Lagos, also said a bank could be held liable for the usage of PoS by robbers if it failed to do its Know Your Customer (KYC) properly before issuing out the machine to customers.
He also said anyone who perpetrated such criminal acts could be traced by security agents based on information provided by the clients who were issued the PoS.