Parliamentary Replies
Published Date: 10 January 2024

Written reply to Parliamentary Question on the take-up rate of the "Money Lock" feature in local banks

Date: For Parliament Sitting on 10 January 2024

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Mr Saktiandi Supaat, MP, Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC

Question:

To ask the Prime Minister (a) whether the Government has data on the take-up rate of the “money lock” feature at the local banks; and (b) whether MAS is working with financial institutions to explore new technologies and measures to better protect local banking consumers from digital banking scams, especially for transactions involving foreign bank accounts and against scammers accessing local bank accounts from abroad.

Answer by Mr Lawrence Wong, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance, and Chairman of MAS:

1. Money Lock is a feature that allows customers to set aside a portion of funds in their bank accounts that cannot be transferred digitally. This adds a layer of protection for customers to mitigate their losses should their digital access to bank accounts be compromised.

2. Since its launch by the local banks in November, Money Lock has been activated on about 38,000 accounts, with over $3.2 billion of savings set aside. MAS is working with other major retail banks to introduce the Money Lock feature as well, even as the local banks continue to raise awareness of this feature among their customers.

3. MAS works closely with financial institutions, industry players and other government agencies to implement technologies and solutions to counter increasingly sophisticated scam tactics employed by scammers. A recent example is the enhancement of banks’ banking apps which blocks access to the app when there is a side-loaded app with access permissions turned on in the customer’s mobile phone. This enhancement has led to a significant reduction in the number of malware-enabled scams in recent months. MAS will continue to work with financial institutions to assess additional measures for higher risk transactions, including those relating to transfers to overseas payees and access of bank accounts from overseas locations. These and other measures will be rolled out if assessed to be effective.


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