South Africa’s Standard Bank is
offering its customers free anti-phishing software to protect
against online fraud, the first bank in the country to offer such a

The country’s largest lender by
assets said the new software, ‘Rapport’, will protect customers
from divulging sensitive financial details to “unscrupulous” third
parties when banking online.

“While financial institutions like
Standard Bank have spent a great deal of time on consumer education
and internal mechanisms to secure our systems, customers still find
themselves out of pocket when defrauded by unscrupulous fraudsters
when responding to phishing emails,” said Itumeleng Monale, the
bank’s director of self-service banking.

In 2009, there were a total of
500,000 unique phishing sites identified on the internet with an
average of 294 financial institutions targeted globally, according
to the bank.

Last month Standard Bank joined
forces with the Spar retail group to launch a person-to-person
money transfer system, as the bank focuses on connecting the
estimated 13.2m unbanked rural population of South Africa (see
RBI 629