MyMoney Online

Fraudulent debit orders: How to get your money back

Debit orders are very convenient and they save time, but there is a dark side to them. How often do you scrutinise your bank statements, especially if you have a lot of transactions coming through each month?

Marilyn of Rosebank called CapeTalk to say that she discovered that R95 had been taken off her account, via a debit order, by Mhlangaveza Family Assurance (they sell funeral policies - http://www.mhlangaveza.co.za/) without her permission.

It seems this is, unfortunately, a common occurrence

Her bank told her they have many customers with similar experiences and that it has almost become standard business practice for some new businesses to intentionally do this, as a means of marketing their product (it gets the accountholder’s attention!).

This does not sound legal or ethical.

“It’s important for consumers to understand what a debit order entails,” says Advocate Clive Pillay, Ombudsman for banking services. “A debit order is an agreement between a customer and a service provider. In terms of that agreement the customer authorises the service provider to take money out of her or his account for the service provided. The bank is not a party to the agreement.”

How to stop the debit order and get your money back

According to Pillay, if there is a debit order that you have not authorised, all it takes to stop it is a written instruction to end the deduction. You can also instruct your bank to reverse the debit order. Your bank will then check the authenticity of the mandate and, if it was indeed an unauthorised debit order, they will refund your money.

What about the bank costs that you incurred?

“The bank simply acted on a mandate,” says Pillay. “It incurred costs in order to administrate the debit order. Your right of recourse is against the fraudulent service provider. Lots of people have difficulty getting their heads around that one and I can understand that.”

How is the debit order possible if you didn’t sign anything?

“This is a classic example of identity theft,” says Pillay. “The fraudulent company got their hands on your details in some way, but how? That’s for you to find out.”

Pillay says he is not investigating this as it’s outside the jurisdiction of his office.

Moral of the story? Take the time each month to inspect your bank statements; then promptly inform your bank if you suspect fraud. The onus is on you!


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : Fraudulent debit orders: How to get your money back


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI
Read More
Pay less fees and tax on your investments. Diversify. Then be patient…

Pay less fees and tax on your investments. Diversify. Then be patient…

The market is toast. Don’t leak money! Bruce Whitfield interviews Craig Gradidge, South Africa’s top wealth manager.

3 best shares to buy this week (by Cannon Asset Managers)

3 best shares to buy this week (by Cannon Asset Managers)

Dr Adrian Saville shares his stock picks of the week.

Last week was the JSE’s best in 10 years. Did you time it right?

Last week was the JSE’s best in 10 years. Did you time it right?

You cannot predict market turnarounds. Seriously. It’s freakin’ impossible, says Personal Financial Advisor Warren Ingram.

3 best local and offshore shares to buy, right now (by Herenya Capital Advisors)

3 best local and offshore shares to buy, right now (by Herenya Capital Advisors)

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield asks Herenya Capital Advisors founder Petri Redelinghuys for his stock picks of the week.

How to save and buy an island (you need only R2000 per month)

How to save and buy an island (you need only R2000 per month)

Saving money on boring stuff such as a car can allow you to do really outrageous and courageous stuff, says Sam Beckbessinger.

3 best shares to buy, right now (by Sasfin Securities)

3 best shares to buy, right now (by Sasfin Securities)

Nesan Nair, a stockbroker and portfolio manager at Sasfin Securities, shares his stock picks of the week.

Popular articles
'Perhaps somebody is misleading the Public Protector'

'Perhaps somebody is misleading the Public Protector'

Bishop Malusi Mpumlwana gives his take on the supposed 'fightback' against Pravin Gordhan.

'I don’t spend much. I drive an old car. I’ve never been in debt'

'I don’t spend much. I drive an old car. I’ve never been in debt'

Bruce Whitfield interviews analyst Chris Gilmour about his attitude toward money (hopes and fears, successes and failures, etc.).

Daughter of Timol murder accused Joao Rodrigues reveals sexual abuse

Daughter of Timol murder accused Joao Rodrigues reveals sexual abuse

Tilana Stander talks about the abuse she suffered at the hands of her father.

[LISTEN]  My Life Beyond HIV

[LISTEN] My Life Beyond HIV

Pholokgolo Ramothwala chats to Azania about living with HIV and his newly released book, My Life Beyond HIV.

WATCH:  Crash, bang, wallop! How would YOU explain this to YOUR boss?

WATCH: Crash, bang, wallop! How would YOU explain this to YOUR boss?

The woman comes out of the crash without a scratch but is visibly distressed by the incident that she may have to explain later.

[LISTEN] Steinhoff explained: 100 times more looted in Steinhoff saga than VBS

[LISTEN] Steinhoff explained: 100 times more looted in Steinhoff saga than VBS

Steinhoff’s Web of Deception: An Explainer with Financial Mail journalist Warren Thompson.

[WATCH] Iceland’s Christmas advert banned- for being too political

[WATCH] Iceland’s Christmas advert banned- for being too political

Khabazela shares tweets and Facebook posts that have gone viral.