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Preventing fraud and protecting our customers

Fraudsters’ tactics are getting more sophisticated, so we need to make sure we stay one step ahead. That’s why we have a range of safeguards in place to protect our customers, and we regularly review and update our systems.

See the FCA’s comparison of banks’ fraud controls

Fraud prevention philosophy

What is your approach to fraud prevention?

Our priority is the safety and security of the bank and its customers. By taking precautions to protect our customers, we can help them steer clear of fraud. If they are affected, we promise to investigate, and do what we can to avoid innocent victims being left out of pocket.

We are involved with multiple organisations and campaigns centred on preventing fraud, and work closely with law enforcement agencies and other banks to tackle any issues as soon as they come up.

What controls do you have in place / how do we protect you?

Here are just some of the measures we use (we have others, but it’s safer that we don’t publicise them):

  • Behavioural analysis
    • We build profiles of our customers based on the interactions we normally have with them. This means that if their usual activity changes, it can help us to identify a potential fraudster.
    • We build customer profiles in order to identify unusual account activity if it happens.
  • Multi-factor authentication
    • For example, one-time SMS passcodes and hard tokens.
  • Anti-spoofing solutions for SMS and calls
    • If a message hasn’t been sent by us, but says it has, in certain situations we can block it. This limits the opportunities for fraudsters to pretend to be us.
    • We also have controls in place to prevent fraudsters from impersonating our call centres and using our telephone numbers.
  • Real-time detection system
    • Every transaction goes through a number of checks before being approved.
  • Online security
    • We protect our websites with encryption, malware detection and firewalls to protect against unauthorised access. We also advise our customers on how to keep their data and money safe, such as never sharing passwords.
  • Warning messages
    • Our pop-up messages prompt customers to consider if their payment is for a legitimate reason.
  • Phone Checker
    • Our phone checker allows customers to see if a phone number is genuinely one of ours.

Customer education and awareness

What do you do to educate your customers to ensure they are fully aware of the latest fraud trends / advice?
  • Our Be Your Own Hero fraud awareness campaign explains how to protect yourself and what to watch out for.
  • We’re an active member and supporter of the Take 5 campaign, which offers free advice to help everyone protect themselves.
  • We have information on our website – visit the fraud and security pages.
  • We set up expert-led sessions and community events to inform store colleagues and customers on how to spot fraud.
  • We post fraud awareness messages on our social media channels.
  • Our colleagues complete several mandatory training sessions on fraud each year.


How and when we would contact our customers

We get in touch with our customers in a number of different ways, including email, phone and text.

We give them the following messages:

Always take care if you’re contacted by anyone saying they’re from Metro Bank. If you’re not sure, disconnect the call and call the number on the back of your card (0345 08 08 500).

We use one-time passcodes to verify a customer’s identity or a payment they have requested. We may send a unique code to the mobile number you’ve given us. The message will state exactly what the code is for, like creating a new payee. You shouldn’t tell anyone what the code is, other than to a Metro Bank colleague or entering it into the banking platform you’re on.

If you get a one-time passcode you’re not expecting, or if someone asks for the code for a different reason than it says in the text message, don’t give it to them. Call us straightaway on 0345 08 08 500.

Remember, although we may sometimes ask you to reply to text messages or send you e-mails with links, we will never:

  • Include a link to a log-in page 
  • Ask for your complete security number, password or card number
  • Ask you for answers to your security questions
  • Ask you to transfer money to a ‘safe account’

If you’re not sure whether a SMS or email is genuine, please call us on 0345 08 08 500.

Never post any personal or banking information on social media.

How and when can our customers contact us?

In the UK: If they believe they are a victim of fraud or need advice, they can call us 24/7 on 0345 08 08 500 or visit us in store.

Outside of the UK: If they believe they are a victim of fraud or they need advice, call us 24/7 on 0044 203 402 8312 or visit us in store.

How we collaborate with the rest of the industry

Industry initiatives / collaboration
  • We are a founding member of the Authorised Push Payment (APP) Scams Voluntary code, which commits us to detecting, preventing and responding to APP scams.
  • We are members of UK Finance and take an active role in all fraud prevention plans.
  • We are members of CIFAS and other fraud bureaus.
  • We contribute to the funding a specialist police unit, the Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit, which tackles the organised criminal groups responsible for financial fraud and scamsof the Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit. The DCPCU is a national police unit formed between the City of London Police, the Metropolitan Police Service, UK Finance and the Home Office.
  • We share fraud intelligence with the rest of the banking industry and law enforcement to protect our customers.
  • We’re an active member and supporter of the Take 5 campaign, which offers free advice to help everyone protect themselves.
  • We are part of the Banking Protocol, which identifies customers who may be more vulnerable from being targeted by fraudsters, and intervenes.
  • We work with other banks to quickly recover stolen funds for our customers.

Our aim is to find the right balance between working to prevent fraud and still giving our customers a brilliant banking experience. We are committed to doing all we can to protect everyone who banks with us, as well as providing useful tools and advice to help them protect themselves. Our proactive and holistic approach to keeping our accounts safe and reliable has earned us a number of awards:

  • #1 for Personal Current Accounts in the Competition and Market Authority’s (CMA) Service Quality Survey
  • #2 for Business Current Accounts in the CMA Service Quality Survey
  • Current Account rated Five Stars, Moneyfacts Annual Star Rating for PCAs 2019
  • Business Bank Account of the Year, British Small Business Awards 2018
  • Best All Round Personal Finance Provider, Moneynet Personal Finance Awards 2019
  • Best Current Account Provider for Branch Service, Moneywise Customer Service Awards