SAMA: 4.8 Million Remotely Opened Accounts Identities Do Not Match Their Mobile Numbers

Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) reveals about 4.84 million accounts were opened remotely without verifying customer's ID or mobile number used.

Riyadh — The Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) revealed that about 4.84 million accounts were opened remotely without verifying that the customer’s identification number matches the identity number used in the mobile phone.

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The total accounts opened remotely without verifying that the mobile number matches the user’s identity is about 55 percent of the total accounts.

SAMA acknowledged a shortage of qualified cadres in the anti-financial fraud units; which weakened the counting of the types, methods, numbers, and sizes of all fraud cases.

These included the fraudulent data of victim and beneficiary with a severe shortcoming in tracking funds; resulting from fraud to stop them before transferring outside the Kingdom.

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The procedures and mechanisms for receiving and dealing with fraud reports are weak. The customer awareness programs have been inefficient in materials and channels used.

And ineffective operations control systems created a challenge in the early detection and reduction of fraud cases.

Effective from Sunday, the Central Bank banned expatriates from international transfers unless they activated their account at the branch or a self-service machine through fingerprint.

It also suspended international transfers through the electronic service for 24 hours. And two hours for a previously transferred beneficiary.

The maximum limit for purchasing transactions for previously undocumented accounts is SR20,000.

The bank can set up a mechanism for international customers to document the account; and raise the upper limit with the bank bearing the risks.

The Central Bank had directed all banks and money exchanges that the daily transfer limit through electronic services for all segments of bank customers is SR60,000.

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