The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has revealed that during the first half of 2018, Nigerian banks lost a combined total of N12 billion to various forms of crime ranging from armed robbery to fraud.
The latest disclosure is contained in the apex bank’s half-year 2018 economic report which was published recently.
According to the CBN, there were twenty thousand, seven hundred and sixty-eight (20,768) reported incidents of fraud and forgery. These reported incidents, with a total value cost of N19.77 billion, included both the attempted and successful crimes.
This is a dramatic increase compared to the same period last year
Between January and June of 2017, the total reported incidents of attempted and successful frauds/forgeries in the banking sector was sixteen thousand, seven hundred and sixty-two (16,762). This was valued at N5.52 billion.
In the end, however, the banks only incurred a total loss of N0.78 billion in H1 2017 compared to the N12 billion that was lost in H1 2018.
The actual nature of the crimes
The CBN said that the crimes were perpetrated by both employees of banks and other criminals. Therefore, the nature of the crimes is such that it involved fraudulent ATM withdrawals, illegal transfer of funds, armed robbery attacks, cash pilfering, defalcation, the suppression and conversion of customers’ deposits, etc.
“There were 20,768 reported cases of fraud and forgery (attempted and successful), valued at N19.77 billion in the review period, compared with 16,762 cases, involving N5.52 billion and US$ 0.12 million in the corresponding period of 2017. The actual loss by banks to fraud and forgery, however, amounted to N12.06 billion, compared with the N0.78 billion and US$0.03 million, suffered in the first half of 2017.”
Recall that Nairametrics had recently reported on the incidents of armed robbery attacks which is one of the most serious and dangerous of all the crimes mentioned in the report. Recall the Offa bank robbery that rocked the country earlier this year. Also, we recently reported the attack at a Union Bank branch in Ekiti State which left two people dead.
Meanwhile, in August, the Nigeria Police had declared nine bankers wanted for stealing more than N500 million from customers.