Why we may all pay price for banking cybercrime – leader comment

The Royal Bank of Scotland's headquarters at Gogarburn near Edinburgh (Picture: Ian Rutherford)
The Royal Bank of Scotland's headquarters at Gogarburn near Edinburgh (Picture: Ian Rutherford)
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Banks have saved money by closing smaller branches by the war against cyber criminals is getting expensive.

In about three weeks, from Black Friday to 19 December, customers of the Royal Bank of Scotland spent a staggering £11.8 billion and made nearly 310 million different credit and debit card transactions.

However, amid the hustle and bustle of all this computerised trade were people intent on stealing your savings. According to the bank, staff prevented more than 39,000 fraudulent transactions worth a total of more than £11.6 million.

Money can now fly around the world at a touch of a button – something that increasingly sophisticated thieves have proved eager and able to exploit.

Banks may have less need for strong walls and impenetrable safes to keep our money and may have made savings by closing local branches to the horror of many customers, but they must now work hard to ensure their firewalls and encryption are up to scratch and invest heavily in cybersecurity.

It may not be popular, but the result of this war on cybercrime could be that we end up having to pay for accounts if our money is to be kept safe and the lifeblood of the economy is to continue to flow.

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