22 November 2022

Absa processed over R60 billion worth of transactions last Black Friday, a trend which is expected to continue this year.

As the first Black Friday falling outside of lockdown restrictions in two years, Absa anticipates further growth in debit and credit card spend as one of South Africa’s busiest shopping periods approaches.

“Following a record 200% increase in e-commerce levels in 2020, and a 231% increase in debit and credit contactless card volumes in 2021, Absa is bracing itself for another intense Black November. Last year, approximately 2.1 million Absa cardholders spent a whopping R1.3 billion on Black Friday marking a 10.71% increase in spend on the day since 2020,” said Christine Wu, Managing Executive: Consumer Product, Absa Everyday Banking.

“Undoubtedly supported by an ever-growing list of innovative payment options including Apple Pay, Garmin Pay, Samsung Pay, Fitbit Pay and QR Payments, Absa was once again at the forefront of payment innovation this year and was one of the first banks to offer Google Wallet, significantly widening the array of payment options customers now enjoy. With cutting-edge payment options, we expect another busy Black Friday and indeed Black November,” added Wu.

With the value of e-commerce transactions stabilising from 2020’s unprecedented growth, along with the growing trend of retailers offering specials throughout November, and not just on Black Friday, Absa expects this to be reflected in greater activity over the entire month.

This year, to celebrate Absa’s wide range of digital payments, Absa Rewards customers will earn double cashback on their shopping from 23 to 30 November 2022, based on their Rewards tier, with a maximum earn of 60% (this applies to both Bank earn, and Partner earn). To qualify for double earn, customers simply need to pay with their Absa Credit and Debit cards and complete at least one Absa Advantage challenge on the Banking App in the three months leading up to Black Friday.

Don’t fall victim to Fraud this Black Friday

As Black Friday approaches, fraudsters will be in overdrive trying to scam unsuspecting consumers. Fraudsters will use this as an opportunity to dupe customers into believing that they are engaging with legitimate organisations with the sole purpose of committing fraud for personal gain.

Card and Digital payments are great mediums to perform secure payments – secure channel using the mobile banking application to authorise transactions. Black Friday will present rogue websites or platforms where “once in a lifetime” specials are presented. Always validate the credibility of the website or email offers. Consider the products offered and identify comparative prices for similar goods or services. Assess if the company/party presenting the offer is credible and attempt to validate the company. Search for reviews and possible complaints linked to the party offering the special. Consult legitimate parties offering similar products to sense check the offers. Lastly, use the “Account Verification Service” offered on Absa Online to validate the account holder against the party offering the goods or services.

Be vigilant for fraudsters who will attempt to social engineer you i.e. Voice call. Fraudsters cannot access the secure environments (your bank account) as they do not have the “keys to the safe”. They therefore need to contact you as the customer and attempt to convince you to compromise the “keys to the safe”. The “keys to the safe” include your Card CVV, Card expiry date, Online Password/Passcode and Online PIN. Fraudsters also need you to approve transactions and will present different scenarios to convince you to approve the transactions they’re trying to initiate.

The typical voice call social engineering will start with a friendly voice, panic of possible fraud and the presentation of credible information i.e. your ID number or account number. The party will require your participation and will need you to approve transactions to reverse fraud or provide a service. Absa will never ask our customers to share their “keys to the safe”, approve transactions to reverse fraud or transfer your funds from your account to a safe Absa account. If asked for any of this drop the call and contact the Fraud Hotline 0860 557 557. Customers can rest assured that Absa’s systems are world-class, and we have a market-first digital fraud warranty for customers who bank using our mobile banking app – signaling our confidence in the security of our app as the safest way to bank.

Tips to avoid fraud:

So how does one avoid falling victim to scams/schemes? For every claim made by fraudsters, we suggest the following response:

False promises made by fraudsters Response
“It is a once in a lifetime opportunity.” If it’s too good to be true it probably is fraud
“It is urgent and requires swift action.” Pause and think before you respond. If unsure drop the call and contact the Fraud Hotline.
Out of the blue contact to offer you opportunities you have not asked for Always question surprise calls from unknown parties and delay to validate yourself.
“You have to download software or material.”

Never download software or material on instruction. Ensure your anti-virus software remains updated.

“Please provide me with your ‘keys to the safe’ (logon credentials, card details).” Never share your “keys to the safe” (logon credentials, card details) with anyone
It requires your electronic approval (online approval or OTP) Never approve anything unless you have initiated the transaction
It requires advanced payments/deposits Do not make advanced payments/deposits to strangers. Research the supplier and validate the credibility and relationship to the account i.e. Account Verification Services
It cannot be validated by a 3rd party Use your trusted browser and combine the institution and scams/schemes during a search
Access your payments using the hyperlink supplied Always access Absa online banking by typing in the Absa website in your browser.