Victoria Atkins, Member of Parliament for Louth and Horncastle, spoke to Lloyds staff about the measures in place to protect and safeguard their most vulnerable customers.
Victoria met Geraldine Boylan, Lloyds’ Group Public Affairs representative for the East Midlands and Bank Manager, Angela Smith and her team in the Horncastle branch.
On the agenda was how banking and the security threats it faces have changed in recent years, how Lloyds train their staff to recognise vulnerable customers and the measures they enact to protect them. This includes The Banking Protocol - a partnership between banks, police and trading standards. By using the protocol during 2018 Lloyds Banking Group prevented £14.2m of fraud across c.1650 cases, with the average value of prevention per case amounting to over £8,500.
Commenting, Victoria said: “It was a pleasure to speak to Geraldine about what Lloyds is doing nationally to combat fraud, and I was heartened to see how well this is translating across local branches here in Louth and Horncastle. This was enriched by hearing about the experiences of the dedicated front-line staff who work so hard every day to recognise people who may be at risk and respond accordingly.”
Online fraud is a growing problem, but fraudsters are also using methods to encourage victims to visit their local branch in person to withdraw cash and sadly vulnerable people are seen as easy targets for these types of scams.
Customer facing branch staff are trained to familiarise themselves with regular customers who may be vulnerable, become attuned to their regular banking business and recognise any behaviour which is out of character or may be the result of fraudulent activity. Where bank staff have concerns for a customer they follow safeguarding procedures and can enact the Banking protocol, making a call to the police which triggers an immediate priority response to the branch.
Jo Harris, Lloyds Banking Group Ambassador for the East Midlands, said: “We take our duty of care to our customers very seriously. The Banking Protocol is just one example of this. As well as equipping our branch colleagues with the knowledge of how scammers work and what to look out for, it also provides potential victims with extra support to prevent them becoming a victim in the future”.