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BFCSA investigates fraud involving lenders, spruikers and financial planners worldwide.  Full Doc, Low Doc, No Doc loans, Lines of Credit and Buffer loans appear to be normal profit making financial products, however, these loans are set to implode within seven years.  For the past two decades, Ms Brailey, President of BFCSA (Inc), has been a tireless campaigner, championing the cause of older and low income people around the Globe who have fallen victim to banking and finance scams.  She has found that people of all ages are being targeted by Bankers offering faulty lending products. BFCSA warn that anyone who has signed up for one of these financial products, is in grave danger of losing their home.

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BFCSA: UK Bank fraud victims - Banks pick and choose which victims to compensate via FOS

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Sound familiar In Australia?  Doesn’t take much to know why our banks now all have internal customer advocates

to control what suits them to investigate internally and what suits them to be investigated by the FOS!

 

Hope for bank fraud victims: 'We were robbed of £47,000 – but the ombudsman took our side'

3 September 2016

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/money/consumer-affairs/hope-for-bank-fraud-victims-we-were-robbed-of-47000--but-the-omb/

 

In what could be a breakthrough ruling for victims of banking fraud, the financial ombudsman is to order a high street bank to repay an elderly couple who lost tens of thousands of pounds in a conveyancing scam.

The ombudsman, which settles disputes between customers and financial services firms, will tell Lloyds Bank to repay £47,508 plus interest to Donald Kelly, a retired professor, and his wife, Patricia.

Its decision was based on what Lloyds knew about the fraudsters.

Banks are supposed to check the credentials of all customers when they open an account and to be especially vigilant when large sums are paid into or taken out of new accounts.

Prof Kelly, 83 and Mrs Kelly, 82, are just two of many victims who have contacted Telegraph Money after being swindled out of life-changing amounts of money while in the process of buying a property.

  • Seven checks to avoid falling victim to a 'solicitor scam'
  • 'Fraudsters hacked emails to my solicitor and stole £340,000 from my property sale'

Like other victims, the Kellys received a convincing-looking email from a criminal who pretended to be their solicitor and requested payment into an alternative account.

The Kellys believed they were paying a deposit of £47,508 to their solicitor on September 2 last year, just over a month before moving from Wirral, Merseyside, to their new home in a retirement village in Exeter. In fact, the fraudsters received the money.

The couple complained to both banks and then took their case to the ombudsman.  In an email to the Kellys with her provisional findings, Sandra Quinn, the ombudsman for banking and credit, said: “As you know this account was newly opened.

"I can review whether the payment coming into the account was consistent with what [Lloyds] knew and whether it could have done anything.  “I believe [Lloyds] had time to be alerted and take some action and there’s no evidence it did.”

Prof Kelly said the ombudsman had told him that this decision had been confirmed in its final ruling, although the ombudsman declined to comment, saying it had not yet sent a letter with its final decision.

Prof Kelly reported the fraud to Action Fraud, the UK's cybercrime and fraud reporting centre, in October. He was not contacted by Surrey Police until January. The crime is currently under investigation.

Lloyds said: “We would like to apologise for the inconvenience caused to Prof Kelly. We will accept the decision from the ombudsman once it is received and will offer him compensation in line with the ombudsman’s findings.”

David Williams, managing director of Ford Simey, said the firm had conducted an investigation as soon as it became aware of the scam and had found no evidence that its systems had been compromised.

What the Kellys’ case means for other fraud victims

The couple’s success will give hope to other victims that they have grounds to demand compensation from banks that allow fraudsters to open accounts.

Banks are supposed to carry out checks on new customers to ensure that they are who they say they are.

Andrew Goodwill, founder of the Goodwill group, which fights fraud, said: “The ombudsman’s ruling, while it will not set a formal precedent, suggests there was a flaw in the due diligence that Lloyds should have carried out when the fraudsters’ account was opened.”

He said that although the ombudsman could comment on banks’ processes, it did not have the power to enforce changes. But he said the ruling showed it was worth reporting disputes to the ombudsman.

“It’s nice that a member of the public has taken on the banks and won, as it hardly ever happens,” Mr Goodwill said.  Prof Kelly said: “It was only when the ombudsman began to investigate Lloyds that we started getting information from the bank.”

A victory for the Kellys – but most victims are not so lucky

Telegraph Money has heard from numerous home buyers who were left with no one to turn to after being conned into transferring money to the accounts of cyber criminals, losing an average of about £100,000.

When Ellen Wright discovered that she had been duped into paying a fraudster the £137,000 intended for the purchase of a flat in London, she called her bank, First Direct. But as it was 6.40pm on a Friday she was told it would have to wait until the next morning.

Vivian Gabb was robbed of almost £50,000 by a criminal pretending to be her solicitor. Her bank, Halifax, said: “While we sympathise with Mrs Gabb’s situation, [we] made the payment in accordance with her properly authorised instructions.”

Andrew Doyle and Susan Paul had more than £200,000 stolen over one Easter weekend.

They had intended to use the money to buy their first home together. The week after the fraud was committed the couple’s conveyancing firm, Total Conveyancing Services, added a disclaimer to its email communication including the words: “TCS will not accept responsibility if you transfer money into an incorrect account”.

In July, Telegraph Money disclosed that one in three cases of conveyancing fraud was never investigated by the police, despite the huge sums involved.

 

Telegraph Money has put together a seven point guide for property buyers and sellers to stop them becoming victims of conveyancing scams.

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