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Victory for fraud victim who took on HSBC

Victory for fraud victim who took on HSBC

A victim of fraud who took on HSBC after being told she might never see her money again has received a full refund.

Last week, FTAdviser published its investigation into the way in which the customer - a key worker based in Yorkshire - was dealt with after she reported a loss of nearly £10,000 from an authorised push payment scam.

The customer, who said she is still pursuing a complaint into the way her case was handled, contacted FTAdviser after the story was published last week to say the money had reappeared in her HSBC account.

She said: "I have just checked my bank balance tonight and the money has been refunded.

"No communication from HSBC; it’s just gone back into my account. So I don’t know if it was the end of the investigation, the complaint or all your pushing that instigated this; to be honest I don’t care, I’m just so thankful to have it back."

The client first contacted FTAdviser four days after she was the victim of a sophisticated APP scam. The fraudsters had cloned HSBC's number on the back of her bank card, and seemed to know her full date of birth and memorable passcode, lulling her into a false sense of security.

The call also came within days of her having received money from a bond that had matured - "it was the most money I had ever had in my account", she said, adding it was a strange coincidence in timing. 

However, when she first contacted HSBC, as reported by FTAdviser, she was left not knowing whether she would get any or all of her money back, her case had not been taken up initially until she called HSBC's fraud team, and she was also left facing a long drive into Leeds to get access to her bank account, as HSBC had suspended her account after her calls.

Although she said she was "ecstatic" to get her money back, she has still pressed forward with a complaint over the way her case was initially handled, and over the lack of proactive communication from HSBC over a fraud which, according to the first phone call operator who dealt with her initial query, had been known to the bank.

When FTAdviser spoke with HSBC, a spokesman said: “We adhere to best practice standards to prevent financial crime and where we identify a scam or potentially fraudulent payment, we take timely and appropriate action. We are thoroughly reviewing this case and [the client] will be contacted by the team once the review is complete.”

According to the customer, she had not been contacted by HSBC as at Friday 29 May, despite having had her money restored to her. 

simoney.kyriakou@ft.com