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Commercial bank not truly ready for serious online banking—NASS

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As naira crunch bites harder, the National Assembly Thursday observed that with the experiences of Nigerians on the suddenly forced online banking in the name of cashless policy of the apex bank, it has become clear that the commercial banks digital platforms were not ready for the volume of traffic coming with the policy.
Accordingly, the House of Representatives has urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to direct commercial banks to overhaul the existing online/electronic banking platforms for the efficient conduct of electronic banking operations.
The call was a sequel to a unanimous adoption of a motion by Rep. Sergius Ogun (PDP-Edo) at plenary on Thursday. Moving the motion earlier, Ogun said that Section 88 (1) and (2) of the Constitution, empowered the National Assembly to conduct investigations into activities of any authority executing or administering laws made by the assembly like the CBN. He said the CBN was established under Section 1 of the CBN Act, to issue legal tender currencies in Nigeria. According to him, Section 2 of the Act saddles the CBN with the duty of promoting a sound financial system in Nigeria. ‘In the wake of the recent naira redesign and cash withdrawal limit policy of the CBN, there has been an increase in the use of online and electronic banking services to carry out monetary transactions across the country. “The use of online or internet banking services by Nigerians in the past three months or thereabout has been characterised by varying degrees of hitches ranging from unsuccessful electronic bank transfers, Point of Sale (PoS) service failure, and a host of others.

Already, a new report revealed that about N3.62 billion fraud has been perpetrated through the Automated Teller Machines (ATMs); Point of Sales (PoS) machines, mobile and other electronic channels and cash as of the third quarter of 2022.
The FITC, which disclosed this in its ‘Report on Frauds and Forgeries in Nigerian Banks’ Q3, 2022, said bank personnel carried out all cash theft cases reported within the period. Specifically, the 18-page document revealed that in the third quarter of 2022, 19, 314 cases were reported, compared to 20, 195 witnessed in the same period in 2021, which was a decrease of 4.36 percent. However, the total amount involved dropped from N34.8 billion to N9.62 billion, a decrease of 72.34 percent. But the total amount lost in the same period last year was N853,167,293.61 (2021) against N3.62 billion in Q3, 2022, representing an increase of 324.50 percent. According to FITC, outsider involvement in frauds increased, moving from 14,243 in Q3, 2021 to 16,125 a year after, which was a 324.50 percent rise. Insider (staff) involvement increased significantly from 32 in Q3, 2021 to 112 in Q3, 2022, a 250 percent rise.

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