Card and Cheque Fraud

Fraud is a criminal offence, a wrongful act performed by a dishonest individual, group or company intended to deceive others in an attempt to take something of value, resulting in financial or personal gain. Below are types of fraud targeting your card’s and cheque’s or using your identity to commit fraud.

Stop any lost, stolen or retained cards immediately via the Standard Bank app or contact Standard Bank immediately to stop your cards and block your accounts:

Fraud: 0800 222 050 
Whistle blowing: 0800 113 443 
Standard Bank lost/stolen cards: 0800 020 600
ATM call centre: 0861 112 510 
ATM claims centre: 0860 102 213 (8 AM to 4:30 PM) 
Standard Bank customer contact centre: 0860 123 000 (weekdays, 8 AM to 9 PM, and weekends / public holidays, 8 AM to 4 PM)


  • Card fraud

    Card fraud is the unauthorised use of your credit or debit card, following the theft of your personal information and bank details. Always be cautious when using your banking cards, especially at ATMs, as fraudsters use a variety of card fraud methods to deceive their victims.

    Card skimming
    Card skimming is the illegal electronic duplication of your credit or debit card and a card has to be inserted into a skimming device in order for it to be copied. Victims of this fraud are usually unaware of the banking transactions until they receive their bank statements, or payment notifications, showcasing the transactions that they didn’t make.

    Card swapping
    Fraudsters attempt to distract you while at the ATM, or when conducting a bank transaction, swapping your bank card for a counterfeit card without your knowledge. Card swapping fraudsters are known to work in groups as it is easier to distract you and retain your card and information or when someone physically observes you and watches your keystrokes as you enter your personal details and banking information.

    Card not present (CNP) fraud
    CNP fraud takes place when neither the card nor the cardholder is present whilst conducting the bank transaction. Fraudsters may memorise or write down your card number, expiry date and CVV (three digits at the back of your bank card) without your knowledge when your card is handed over for payment. With this information, criminals are able to transact fraudulently on the internet or phone as if they are the genuine cardholder.

    How to protect yourself against card fraud

    • Stay alert at all times when using your cards and making payments.
    • Always be vigilant while using ATMs.
    • Remain aware of your surroundings and don’t allow anyone or anything to distract you. If you get distracted during your ATM transaction, cancel it immediately.
    • Change your PIN immediately if you believe it has been compromised.
    • Stand close to the ATM and cover your PIN when punching it in.
    • Create strong PINs for your various accounts and don’t use the same PIN for your different accounts
    • Don’t request or accept help from anyone while at an ATM.
    • Never force your card into the ATM slot as it might have been tampered with.
    • Don’t let your card out of your sight when making payments and ensure that you get your own card back after every purchase.
    • Review your account details and transactions on a regular basis. Query any disputed transactions with Standard Bank immediately.
    • Shred or tear up your card receipts and statements before you discard them.
    • Always check transaction slips for correct purchase amounts before signing them.

    Make use of any additional Standard Bank security features, such as MyNotifications and One-Time Password (OTP), so that you are alerted to any account movements in real time.

  • Cheque fraud

    Cheque fraud is uses unlawful, fraudulent cheques, which look real, in what seems like a legitimate business transaction. It is imperative for anyone receiving cheque payments to wait until the cheque has cleared before releasing any goods or services paid for in cheque.

    How to protect yourself against cheque fraud

    • Always keep your cheque book, cancelled cheques and statements in a safe place.
    • Don’t sign blank cheques.
    • Report lost or stolen cheques and cheque books to Standard Bank immediately.
    • Check your cheque statements every month and do a reconciliation.
    • Always collect your new cheque book yourself.
    • Provide Standard Bank with up-to-date signatures of everyone who is entitled to sign cheques on your account.

    When writing your cheque

    • Always complete beneficiary details in full.
    • Include your account details when making account payments.
    • Use crossings accordingly.
    • Familiarise yourself with different banks cheque layouts.
    • Write clearly with a non-erasable ballpoint pen; this will make your cheque difficult to alter.
    • Write the full names of the payee and spell them correctly. Avoid using abbreviations.
    • Do not make any corrections or alterations. It is best to cancel it and write another cheque.
    • Never leave large spaces between words and draw a line through any unused space to ensure that nothing can be added to the cheque.
    • Remember to always sign your cheque correctly and clearly.


    When receiving a cheque

    • Only accept cheques from people you know and trust.
    • Look out for any alterations on the payee and amount written in words and figures.
    • Make sure there are no stamps placed in areas that could conceal alternations.
    • Don’t accept cheques issued in black felt-tipped pens.
    • Look out for spelling mistakes on the printed areas of the cheques such as drawer’s details and bank branch name.
    • Be careful of tampering on the MICR code line (the black shaded area).
    • Look out for faded cheques as chemicals could have been used to remove the information.
    • Be wary of typed cheques.
    • Don’t accept unsigned cheques.
    • Be cautious of cheques with shaky and unclear signatures; this could indicate that the signature was traced.
    • Make sure that the same pen has been used throughout the cheque as well as the same handwriting.
  • Identity Theft

    Identity theft is the theft of personal information—ID, passport, driver’s licence, payslip, municipal bills and bank statements—to be used for illegal, fraudulent purposes. Details can be retrieved by stealing your wallet or purse, which may contain your ID, credit card as well as mail containing bank and credit card statements. Fraudsters are also known for rummaging through dustbins looking for private documents containing personal information and can even intercept confidential emails. Also be vigilant when completing your personal information on a form so individuals who physically observe you and watch your keystrokes as you enter your personal details and banking information do not gain access to this sensitive information.

    How to protect yourself against identity theft

    • Manage your personal information wisely. Store personal and financial documents away safely.
    • Destroy personal financial information by tearing, shredding or burning before throwing it away.
    • Monitor account statement cycles so that you know when you can expect your statement as well as when they have not arrived.
    • Don’t carry unnecessary information in your wallet or purse.
    • Create strong PINs and passwords: don’t use obvious choices such as birth dates and first names, and keep PINs and passwords safe.
    • Never disclose personal information by email or telephone.

    What to do if you are a victim of identity fraud

    Report stolen ID or driver’s licences to the South African Fraud Prevention Service immediately on 0860 101 248 or at Furthermore, contact Standard Bank’s 24-hour fraud helpline immediately: 0800 222 050. Report any suspicious activities or transactions to Standard Bank immediately.

    Fraud: 0800 222 050 
    Whistle blowing: 0800 113 443 
    Standard Bank lost/stolen cards: 0800 020 600
    ATM call centre: 0861 112 510 
    ATM claims centre: 0860 102 213 (8 AM to 4:30 PM) 
    Standard Bank customer contact centre: 0860 123 000 (weekdays, 8 AM to 9 PM, and weekends / public holidays, 8 AM to 4 PM)