NatWest customers to set limit on how much money can be transferred from their account

NatWest customers will be able to set their own limit on how much can be transferred from their bank account online, in an attempt to protect the bank’s customers from scams.

The Royal Bank of Scotland owner is to cut the default limit on online transfers from £20,000 to £5,000 a day for the majority of its account holders, but will let them decide if they want to set it higher or lower.

The COVID-19 pandemic has helped to fuel fraud, with agencies including the police and trading standards warning against a range of scams designed to get hold of account holders’ details or persuade them to transfer cash between accounts.

According to UK Finance, £479m was lost last year to “authorised push payment” fraud, where individuals are persuaded to move money into criminals’ accounts.

That figure, which was 5% higher than the previous year, represented 38% of total losses to fraud, second only to credit and debit card payment fraud, The Guardian reports.

NatWest said its customers would be able to go online and set their own maximum daily transfer limit, which could be increased or decreased when needed. It said that as 95% of personal customers had never made a payment of more than £5,000, it was reducing the daily limit to that level as a default.

Those who have made larger transfers in the past will keep the current £20,000 limit unless they choose otherwise.

While the limit can be increased at any time at the customer’s request, NatWest said that to do so the account holder would need to go back online and use one of its card readers.

It is hoped that this extra step will give customers a chance to consider why they are being asked to transfer a large sum of money.

The limit will apply only to digital payments but the bank said there were other safeguards in place for when customers wanted to transfer money by phone or in a branch.

Tags: RBS, NatWest

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