person making a transaction using card
person making a transaction using card

What to Do After a Fraud Transaction: Recovering from a Scam

Bank fraud is a serious issue that has become even more rampant as the digital world continues to expand. Today, individuals who experience fraud find themselves woefully unprepared for such an experience. This is why knowing what to do after a fraud transaction is valuable knowledge for digital dwellers.

close up image of a hand typing debit card details on laptop

What is Online Bank Fraud?

Online bank fraud is an illegal activity where fraudsters access bank information and transfer funds from a person’s online banking account. Online and native mobile banking, money transfer, instant payment, and lending services are all vulnerable to this kind of fraud.

Today’s fraudsters use more elaborate schemes to fool the average person into thinking they’re dealing with a legitimate business. For instance, fraudsters are not new to the banking industry; they prey on unsuspecting customers by posing as banks, merchants, and other businesses. Scammers in the Philippines have also been imitating legitimate websites, including those belonging to banks and online retailers, to trick unsuspecting customers. And they can sometimes trick their victims into wiring the funds to them.

To know what to do after an online fraud, you should first know the common scams plaguing consumers. There are different types of online fraud affecting financial institutions and Filipino citizens, including smishing and credit card and ATM skimming:


Smishing is a texting scam that uses SMS or texting services to perform phishing attacks. This type of phishing scam typically involves a request to send money, credits, or prepaid cellphone charges to an account. Some text message scams involve the fraudster pretending to be a family member whose money was accidentally deposited or credited. Other text messages include claims that you won something or that your bank account was compromised. Some of them are obvious scams due to their poor writing, while others may seem to come from legitimate sources like banks or government agencies.

Credit Card and ATM Skimming

Skimming is a criminal activity that involves the unauthorized duplication of ATM and credit card details. This type of fraud uses a counterfeit card reader that resembles a legitimate ATM reader. The device captures card numbers and PIN codes, which fraudsters then use to create cloned cards for illegitimate withdrawals and online transactions.

What to Do After Online Fraud?

Now that you know the most common frauds in the country, you can prepare for them if they happen to you. But if you still don’t know what to do after being scammed online, don’t worry. The first three steps in dealing with fraud involve working with the bank, calling the vendor, and filing a report.

Here’s what you need to do after being scammed:

  1. Call the Bank

    In any case of bank fraud, it is crucial to inform your bank immediately about the breach of your account. This is important because if the perpetrator has gained access to your personal information and is posing as you, the bank can verify any correspondence they may have received, such as text messages or emails, using your details. As a standard procedure, banks usually suspend the affected accounts, including bank accounts, credit cards, and debit cards, to prevent any further unauthorized transactions.
  2. Contact the Vendor

    Another thing to do after being scammed online is to call the vendor. Work with the vendor to track and record the transactions if someone stole your financial information to make fraudulent purchases. This will be necessary if you want to contest the charges made in your name.
  3. File a Report

    When you’ve contacted the bank and the vendor, it’s time to file an official report. The report you file will serve as the foundation of the investigation. Being exact and thorough is essential, especially when dealing with phishing scams and bank impersonation cases. Make sure to include pertinent details like the incident’s date, time, and location. Additionally, mention any legitimate transactions you made and, if it’s possible, offer proof that the fraudster carried out the subsequent transactions. A comprehensive report not only reinforces your case but also gives the bank an advantage over scammers.
  4. Dispute Charges

    You can challenge any charge on your account that you suspect to be unauthorized. However, this largely relies on the issuing bank’s policies. For instance, Metrobank permits disputes on billing statements within 20 days of receipt, beyond which the charge can no longer be contested. If this is what you want to do after an online fraud, make sure you know your bank’s policies.
  5. Prioritize Security

    One of the best things to do after being scammed is to prioritize security. Do this by regularly updating your passwords and PIN numbers. Get in touch with your financial institution and let them know you’ll be updating your mobile banking PIN and password. Keep your banking, social networking, and email passwords separate as well. As a precaution, create a new password that you’ve never used before. If you used the hacked password on other accounts, change them immediately. You can also ask your bank to suspend your old account if you’re no longer comfortable using it. This is a good money management tip, especially if you have several online bank accounts to secure.
credit cards with a security lock on top

What should I do after being scammed?

Learning what to do after a fraudulent transaction is a crucial part of securing your finances. The first step is realizing that fraud can occur anywhere at any time. After that, you must take extra precautions, implement stringent security measures, and make the most of fraud analytics.

Be Vigilant

Verify the links in any bank-related messages you receive to ensure they are legitimate. Be careful not to click too quickly. A verified and secure URL will always begin with “https://.” Most banks will also never ask for your OTP, CVV, or PIN via phone call, text, or email. Save the secure email addresses and phone numbers of your financial institutions. Don’t ever believe the information provided in an email or phone call from someone you don’t know.

Ensure Security

Check your account activity or bank statements frequently to stay on top of your finances. Also, be discreet with your personal information. Avoid sharing personal information, receipts from online purchases, IDs, and other items on social media. And when it comes to account security, make sure you create strong passwords and PINs for your banking apps.

Maximize Fraud Analytics

Being vigilant and prioritizing security is a good start for fraud prevention. However, it’s even better when you’re aware of fraud detection analytics. Here at FinScore, we provide fraud detection tools for the financial sector to facilitate the smooth onboarding of more clients. A fraud detection tool can go a long way toward preventing fraudsters from accessing people’s banking information. By utilizing a proprietary algorithm, FinScore aids financial institutions in identifying potentially fraudulent transactions. We use alternative telco data like geo-location tags, call frequency, and social media usage. And with knowledge of fraud analytics, you’ll know how to recover from fraud or, even better, prevent it from happening.

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Learn How to Recover from Fraud with Finscore

Knowing what to do after being scammed is essential to ensuring it won’t happen again. Online bank fraud or any type of fraudulent activity can be avoided with the proper information. Keep this knowledge in mind so you’ll know what to do after a fraudulent transaction.

And if you need more information about fraud analytics, don’t hesitate to contact us right away.

FinScore is a financial technology company in the Philippines that offers a powerful credit scoring platform and fraud detection tools based on alternative data, including telco-based data. 

As the pioneer in lending and scoring of the unbanked, we continuously provide fintech services that empower financial institutions, banks, and credit bureaus with flexible platforms to help them make insightful and reliable credit decisions. Contact us today to learn more about our products and solutions for financial institutions.