Suncorp adds support service for cyber scam victims

Suncorp adds support service for cyber scam victims

Suncorp has announced a partnership with cybersecurity and customer identity support service IDCARE, giving its banking customers access to additional support after data breach and identity loss incidents.

The partnership will offer direct support and counselling for victims of data breaches, financial scams, and identity theft, as well as general advice around cybersecurity concerns, including hacking, phishing, investment scams, ransomware, and lost or stolen credentials.

Suncorp becomes one of more than 10 financial institutions partnered with IDCARE, with the support service already offered through Macquarie, ANZ, Westpac, CBA, St George and insurer Allianz.

The financial services industry’s ready adoption of IDCARE suggests not only a tacit recognition of the inevitability and unpreventability of cyber breaches, but also the deft sensitivity necessary to support customers after what is increasingly recognised as a traumatic event for customers – succour which even the biggest and most well-resourced banks may struggle to deliver.

Indeed, as Suncorp’s Executive General Manager, Deposits & Payments, Bruce Rush acknowledged, while the financial services giant is well equipped to assist customers with the transactional concerns of securing one’s accounts and locking access to funds, it was not necessarily “in a position to help them recover from what can be a very traumatic and emotional experience”.

“We want to help our customers get back on their feet as quickly as possible after experiencing a scam, and the best thing we could do is put them in contact with experts who specialise in providing tailored advice and response plans developed to the customer’s needs and circumstances – which is where IDCARE comes in,” Rush said.

Managing Director and founder of IDCARE, Professor David Lacey, further stressed that burden for victims is not just financial but also the emotional distress that comes after falling prey to cybercriminals.

“Being victim to cyber-related crime can be devastating financially and emotionally, and can take years to recover from one of these events. We are here to help Australians and New Zealanders reduce the harm they experience from the misuse of their identity information by providing effective response and mitigation,” he said.

“We can connect members of the community with identity and cybersecurity counsellors who can provide advice on how best to respond a range of incidents including data breaches, ID theft, the full spectrum of digital scams and other cybersecurity concerns.”

Last year Australians lost more than $15.8 million to scammers through personal information compromises (with 53,881 reported scams) – an increase of more than 50 per cent on reported financial losses from the previous year, according to the ACCC’s ScamWatch.

IDCARE operates across Australia and New Zealand as a registered charity, establishing cross-industry partnerships with Qantas, AGL as well as the Federal Government and various state governments across Australia.