If a phishing scam – where you clicked on a dodgy link and signed in or willingly gave someone your username and password over the phone – has ever made you feel like a fool, FNB’s new feature was made for you.
The South African bank has announced the addition of a new Secure Call feature to its smartphone banking app to go with the existing Secure Chat feature. All in the name of keeping you safe… if you’re an FNB customer, that is.
FNB’s customers are people, not phish
Calls made with Secure Call use Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) and mobile data (instead of airtime or talk minutes) to place calls over the Internet (instead of via an operator’s cell tower).
Thankfully, FNB has zero-rated its secure calls with “major network operators” meaning they’ll be footing the mobile data bill so you can continue scrolling through the 2023 Twitt-, err, 𝕏 dumpster fire.
The feature’s security is tied to FNB’s app. Users need to log in to the app before placing secure calls. Currently, the feature only supports secure outbound calls to the bank initiated by the user. The bank plans to allow inbound calls so that users can receive secure calls from the bank in the future.
This still means there’s a possibility you could be targeted by scammers posing as someone from the bank in a thinly veiled attempt to make you give up your details. But now, if you have any doubt you’re talking to a scammer, you can hang up (which you should do anyway) and securely phone FNB to confirm.
Jacques Celliers, FNB CEO, says, “Secure customer interactions are integral to our strategy to build a trusted digital platform. […] We started this journey with our Secure Chat feature, which has been hugely popular with our customers. However, we recognise that some customers prefer to talk to a person. Therefore, it’s crucial for us to enable this interaction at no cost to the customer through a channel that requires proper customer authentication.”