The Bankers Association of Malawi (BAM) says over K100 million (about $294 117) has been lost in fraudulent deals in which fraudsters present fake cash deposit slips to merchants claiming that they have made the deposit and get the goods from merchants.
BAM executive director Lyness Nkungula said fraudsters deposit a fraudulent cheque of a similar amount to that reflected as cash on the fake deposit slip into the merchants’ account.
“Some merchants then telephone the banks to confirm if a deposit of that amount has been made to their account and some bank staff then confirm without verifying the source of the deposit.
“The merchants then release the goods based on the confirmation by the banks. By the time the cheque is discovered as fake or the drawee account has no funds, the goods have already been released and the merchant may have no recourse,” she explained.
According to BAM, cases of this nature were first discovered in the last quarter of 2012.
BAM says fake deposits are an old phenomenon, and are mostly perpetuated by staff in companies’ accounts sections responsible for banking arrangements.
“At times, fraudsters make fake bank stamps for different banks and use them to stamp on fake deposit slips,” said Nkungula.