OCBC customers to receive e-mails and push notifications instead of SMS for banking activities, Latest Singapore News - The New Paper

OCBC customers to receive e-mails and push notifications instead of SMS for banking activities

OCBC Bank customers will no longer receive SMS messages about their banking activities, and will receive alerts through push notifications and e-mails starting Friday.

In a push notification sent to OCBC customers on Thursday, the bank said they will no longer send SMS messages as the default method to inform customers about banking activities such as payments and fund transfers.

According to OCBC’s website, the bank started sending alerts via push notification and e-mail since October for activities such as card transactions, cash withdrawals at local ATMs, PayNow fund transfers and bill payments.

“You will also receive e-mails for your outgoing bank transactions,” the bank said, adding that these measures are rolled out to further protect customers from impersonation and phishing scams.

Customers can still opt to receive SMS messages, but they are encouraged to choose push notifications and e-mails instead to protect themselves from scams, said OCBC.

OCBC is not the first bank in Singapore to stop using SMS messages to deter scammers.

DBS’s website states that the bank has been progressively switching to e-mail and digital bank push notifications as its’ default channels of communication, while UOB’s website states that it had stopped sending SMS messages to notify customers of incoming PayNow transactions since March 1, and has since switched to using e-mail and push notifications.

The Straits Times reported on Tuesday that efforts by retail banks to combat scams have stopped scammers from siphoning $57.6 million from their victims in the first nine months of 2023, according to a statement by the Association of Banks in Singapore.

In addition to that sum, anti-malware tools rolled out by banks recently have prevented further losses of at least $18.6 million.