Fidelity Bank customers lost N2.1bn as fraud cases rise by 22.3%

Fidelity Bank customers lost N2.1bn as fraud cases rise by 22.3% - The Witness Nigeria

Fidelity Bank Plc and its customers suffered N2.1bn loss after the lender saw a surge in fraud and forgery cases in 2023.

Fraud and forgery cases rose by 22.2 per cent year-on-year from 2,518 recorded in 2022 to 3,079 in 2023, according to the bank’s financial statement analysed by THE WHISTLER.

The Central Bank of Nigeria and Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) Act 2006, mandates banks to render monthly returns of frauds and forgeries.

Sections 35 and 36 of NDIC Act 2006, also mandate banks to notify the corporation of any staff dismissed or whose appointment was terminated on accounts of fraud or financial irregularities.

The books disclosed that the amount involved in fraud and forgeries cases rose by 279.6 per cent to N3.82bn by the end of 2023, up from N1bn held as the amount of fraud and forgery cases in 2022.

Aside from fraud incidents on naira accounts, the bank also reported fraud cases in foreign currency to the tune of $15,700, up from the $8,554 recorded in 2022.

According to the data, the actual loss on naira accounts was N2.1bn, rising by 783 per cent from the N237.2m recorded as an actual loss in the year 2022.

However, the data showed that the actual loss as a result of fraud cases in foreign currency fell from $2,450 in 2022 to only $200 by the end of 2023.

The bank did not record a loss in Euro compared to 2022 when the bank lost €100 due to fraud and forgery activities.

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Fidelity Bank is not the only Nigerian bank that has reported fraud and forgery cases.

A 2023 report on fraud and forgeries in Nigerian banks showed that N5.79bn was lost in just the second quarter of 2023.

Despite the surge in fraud cases, the bank grew its gross earnings from N337.1bn in 2022 to N555.8bn by the end of 2023.

Profit after tax of the lender grew by 131.4 per cent from N53.7bn to N124.3bn while the net profit of the bank surged to N99.45bn, from the N46.7bn recorded in 2022.

Fidelity Bank also grew its total assets base from N3.98bn recorded in 2022 to N6.2bn by the end of 2023.

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