UK Finance responds to the publication of the Authorised Push Payment (APP) Scams Voluntary Code

Responding to the publication of the Authorised Push Payment Scam Voluntary Code, Katy Worobec, Managing Director of Economic Crime at UK Finance, said:

Protecting customers from the threat of authorised push payment scams and stopping money going to criminals are the finance industry's foremost priorities. This voluntary code is an important step in strengthening requirements for customer protection. It delivers a commitment from all firms who sign up to the code from May to reimburse victims of authorised push payment scams in any scenario where their bank or payment service provider is at fault and the customer has met the standards expected of them under the code.

It is vital that we get the right outcome for customers and prevent the UK from inadvertently becoming a magnet for fraudsters, while ensuring innocent victims and customers are not penalised for the criminal actions of others. This is why the industry has committed to providing initial funding from the implementation of the code in May until the end of 2019 to reimburse customers of signatory firms in those situations where both the customer and their payment service provider met the required standards set out in the code.

This interim funding is intended to provide the necessary time for the industry to work with the regulators and government to deliver sustainable long-term funding for this reimbursement fund by January 2020. We now hope the Payment Systems Regulator will do everything in its power to support the industry to ensure a long-term funding solution can be introduced, including using its regulatory powers if required.

Meanwhile, the industry will continue to fight fraud on every front to protect customers and prevent this kind of crime - investing in advanced security systems and new ways to track stolen funds, assisting law enforcement in tackling the criminals and supporting the government in improving how intelligence is shared.

Notes to editor

<p>The finance industry is tackling authorised and unauthorised fraud by:</p>
Investing in advanced security systems to protect customers, which <a href="… </a>£705.7 million of unauthorised fraud in the first half of 2018, equivalent to £2 in every £3 of unauthorised fraud.</li>
Delivering the Banking Protocol ? a ground-breaking rapid response scheme through which branch staff can alert police and Trading Standards to suspected frauds taking place. The system is now operational in every police force area and in 2018 <a href="…; £38 million in fraud and led to 231 arrests.</li>
Sponsoring a specialist police unit, the Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit, which tackles the organised criminal groups responsible for financial fraud and scams. In 2018, the Unit <a href="… </a>£94.5 million of fraud, secured 48 convictions and disrupted 11 organised crime groups.</li>
Working with Pay.UK to implement the <a href="… Insights Tactical Solution (MITS)</a>, a new technology that will help track suspicious payments and identify money mule accounts.</li>
Working with Pay.UK to implement <a href="… of Payee</a>, an account name checking service for when a payment is being made that will help to prevent authorised push payment scams.</li>
Hosting and part-funding the Government-led programme to reform the system of economic crime information sharing, known in the industry as Suspicious Activity Reports, so that it meets the needs of crime agencies, regulators, consumers and businesses.   </li>
UK Finance is the collective voice for the banking and finance industry. Representing more than 250 firms across the industry, we act to enhance competitiveness, support customers and facilitate innovation.</li>