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Thursday, April 19, 2007

Fraud alert: www.interswitchnig.com is fake, says InterSwitch

Premier electronic payment switching solutions providers in the country, InterSwitch Nigeria, has disassociated itself from www.interswitchnig.com, saying it’s a fake website that does not have anything in relation with it as a company.

The company, therefore, warned its cardholders to shun the request being made through the Global System for Mobile communications (GSM) Short Messaging Service (SMS).

Cardholders of InterSwitch Nigeria, the company said, “Should not disclose their cards’ Personal Identification Numbers (PINs) to anyone under any guise.”

A fraud alert jointly issued by the management of InterSwitch and 23 member-banks as well as endorsed by the Managing Director of InterSwitch, Mr. Mitchel Elegbe, said it has become imperative for the company to draw attention of its customers.

“The company’s attention has been drawn to an SMS purported to have originated from InterSwitch, and asking millions of ATM card holders to register their cards online at www.interswitchnig.com,” the statement read.

According to InterSwitch’s management, the fake site was specifically developed by some fraudsters to defraud unsuspecting debit cardholders.

“The website address www.interswitchnig.com is fake. InterSwitch’s registered web address is www.interswitchng.com”, the statement added.

However, the fraudulent website has since been shut down after InterSwitch contacted the hosting company of the fake website in the United States.

Investigations revealed that the hosting company of the fake website, has since sent an apology to InterSwitch.

“In the interim, we have reported the case of the fraudulent website to the appropriate law enforcement authorities for investigation,” the hosting company stated.

Whereas assuring numerous cardholders in the country that cards issued on InterSwitch platform remain valid, the statement read: “We are reassuring all ATM card holders that all Automated Teller Machines (ATM) cards and other cards with the InterSwitch logo remain valid on all our channels such as ATMs, Point of Sales (POS), Personal Digital Assistant (PDA), mobile phones and web.”

InterSwitch member banks include Access Bank Plc, Afribank Nigeria Plc, Diamond Bank Plc, Ecobank Plc, Equitorial Trust Bank Plc, Fidelity Bank Plc, First Inland Bank Plc, First Bank of Nigeria Plc, First City Monument Bank Plc and Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB) Plc.

Also in the InterSwitch consortium are IBTC Chartered Bank Plc, Intercontinental Bank Plc, Nigeria International Bank (Citibank) Plc, Oceanic Bank Plc, PlatinumHabib Bank Plc, Skye Bank Plc, Sterling Bank Plc, Union Bank Plc, United Bank for Africa Plc, Wema Bank Plc and Zenith Bank Plc.

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