Ukrainian banks. Things foreigners should beware of in Ukraine – Kiev Private Tours
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10 Sep

Ukrainian banks. Things foreigners should beware of in Ukraine

The rating of Ukrainian banks on deposits of legal entities involves an assessment of the level of confidence of depositors to banks, as well as their overall stability. This rating is based on official statistics of the National Bank of Ukraine.

Building of the National Bank of Ukraine in Kiev

When compiling the rating, the stability of the bank, the amount of assets, the ability of the financial institution to return deposits, as well as the level of support from the state and shareholders were taken into account.

Top-10 banks of Ukraine at the beginning of 2018

1 place. Privatbank. The amount of deposits UAH 151 262.46 million, assets – UAH 245 882.1 million.

2nd place. Raiffeisen Bank Aval. Deposits of individuals – UAH 18,045.46 million, assets – UAH 60 763,65 million.

3rd place. Alfa Bank. Deposits – UAH 15 353.6 million, assets – UAH 37 660.59 million.

4 place. Ukrsotsbank. Deposits of individuals – UAH 14 464.1 million, assets UAH 34 668.94 million.

5 place. OTP Bank. Deposits – UAH 8 908.72 million, assets – UAH 25,012.56 million.

6 place. Bank Pivdenny. Deposits – UAH 6 869.09 million, UAH 20 478.7 million of assets.

7 place. ProCredit Bank. UAH 4 491.26 million of deposits of individuals, UAH 12 340.96 million of assets.

8 place. Kredobank. Deposits – UAH 4 240.31 million, assets – UAH 12 080.8 million.

9 place. TASKOMBANK. Deposits of individuals – UAH 3 307.38 million, assets – UAH 9 430.62 million.

10 place. Megabank. UAH 2 802.3 million of deposits, assets – UAH 8 880.32 million.

Despite the scandalous news that Privatbank was inflicted fraudulent losses in the amount of 5.5 million dollars, the bank still managed to retain the first place in all ratings of Ukrainian banks.

Raiffeisen Bank Aval takes the second place, however, the amount of deposits of the bank is half that of Privatbank.

In January leader of consumer lending Alfa Bank took the third place in terms of deposits and assets.

Quantity of banks operating in Ukraine

In the first half of 2017 the number of operating banks decreased to 88 financial institutions, including 38 banks with foreign investment. The share of foreign capital in the registered capital of banks was 56%.

In January-July 2017 banking system of Ukraine had a net loss of UAH 223 million, which is 41.5 times less than in the corresponding period of the previous year (UAH 9.266 billion).

In July, solvent banks received a net profit of UAH 1.43 billion. Revenues of banks for January-July amounted to UAH 101.624 billion, expenses – UAH 101.846 billion.

In the first half of 2017, solvent banks had UAH 1.1 billion of net profit after tax, while the banking system worked profitable in each of the three months.

Profitable activity was demonstrated by all groups of banks – with foreign and private capital, as well as state-owned banks.

Due to the bankruptcy of 50 banks in 2014-2015, the Ukrainian banking system lost 230 billion UAH which is 9% of Ukraine’s GDP. Law enforcement agencies received 2,149 claims from Deposits insurance fund for individuals, claiming damages for UAH 132.7 billion as a result of illegal actions of officials of insolvent banks; at this, 250 claims where the owners and top managers of banks are the figures in the cases, amount for UAH 99.86 billion.

What ATM should foreigners use in Ukraine?

It is best to withdraw money in Privatbank ATM. It offers the highest cash withdrawal limit. Take into account that in Ukraine ATMs issue only Ukrainian currency.

The same applies to all official institutions. In all restaurants, bars, institutions, only the Ukrainian currency is accepted. If you are asked dollars or euros, this can be fraud.

What to beware of when withdrawing cash from the ATM?

Victims of scammers are the owners of bank cards – both Ukrainians and visitors from abroad.

When we talk about ATM fraud, we mean, first of all, widespread types of fraud around the world – skimming and cash-trapping. In the first case, we are talking about theft of the card data (for the subsequent making a duplicate and stealing money from the account). In the second it is about theft of cash, which the ATM does not issue money after your withdrawal request.

How they steal card data

When skimming, scammers install the special reader into the card reader (the card receiving hole) of the ATM. The device reads data from the magnetic strip of the card. At the same time, the micro-camera installed on the ATM films the process of entering the PIN-code. Scammers use the data and create a duplicate bank card.

As a rule, skimming devices are very small, inserted inside the card reader, and remain invisible. Each year, fraudulent technologies are being improved; today such skimming devices are almost never detectable externally.

Often, skimmers install their devices at ATMs in places of high traffic – in shopping centers, in the central streets of the city, near sports stadiums and concert halls. According to statistics from the Association “EMA”, during one incident of skimming device installation, from a few dozen to several hundred of bank cards may be skimmed.

How to protect yourself from skimming? Do not allow fraudsters to get PIN-code to the card!

Therefore, the first and basic rule of protection from skimming is to close the ATM keyboard (you’re your hand, purse, hat, etc.) when entering the PIN-code. Please note: it is important to close the ATM keyboard (and not to close the entire ATM from those standing in line at the back). Cameras are often installed on the inside of the ATM, in a place that is not visible. The best protection is a closed keyboard which makes it possible to type the PIN code.

The second rule of protection against skimming is setting of limits for operations with the card (for example, withdrawal limit, limit for the transfer of card funds, limit on the payment on the Internet). The limit does not allow the use of amount exceeding the limit for the specified operation. The card holder can easily change or cancel the limit within a few minutes: you can do this either by calling the bank or by using your Internet banking (including mobile banking). To cancel or change the limit, additional identification will be required – for example, the introduction of a password to Internet banking, which no one except the cardholder knows.

In such case the set limit does not allow the fraudsters to steal money, even if a duplicate card is created.

In the event that there is a suspicion that the card could be duplicated, you should:

  • Immediately call the bank and block the card;
  • Change the PIN immediately (you can do it at the ATM).

How they steal money from ATMs

When cash-trapping, the ATM “delays” cash without giving it to the card holder. Scammers install a special bar with adhesive tape (double-sided tape) in the opening for cash. The banknotes sent to issue are glued to the bar, which, moreover, does not let the cash out, leaving it inside the ATM.

Usually it looks like this: the holder inserts a card into the card reader, enters the PIN code and selects the cash withdrawal operation. A message about the cash withdrawal appears on the ATM screen – but the money stays inside. Except the cases when the ATM is out of cash (this is usually warned by the corresponding message on the screen), non-issuance of cash signals fraud.

What to do? The most important thing is to stay near the cash dispenser, and not to leave. Then there may be two options:

  1. Without leaving the ATM, call the bank (the phone is indicated on the ATM or on the bank card) – and follow the recommendations;
  2. Get money out of the cash withdrawal hole on your own. In case of normal operation of the ATM, the “blind” bar installed on the opening rises so that the mechanism delivers cash notes to the outside. If a fraudulent bar is installed in the hole, it will remain in place. However, the bar is not fixed (the fraudsters sets it so that it can be removed in a matter of seconds). By pulling at the bar, it is usually possible to remove it without much effort (it is impossible to remove the real bar from the ATM without using additional tools). In the event that it was possible to remove the fraudulent bar with the cash stuck to it, you still need to call the bank and report the incident.

Unfortunately, Ukraine has “all conditions created” in order to make fraudsters pay attention to ATMs. This is facilitated by real shortcomings of Ukrainian entrepreneurs and the financial system.

Recommendations from the experts of the Ukrainian Interbank Association of Payment System Members “EMA” to holders of payment cards who came to the Champions League final, citizens of Ukraine and foreign citizens:

  • If possible, pay for goods and services by card (Kiev has the highest percentage of retail and service outlets accepting a card for payment among regions of Ukraine).
  • Use cards with chip and PayPass/PayWave technologies, phones with GPay and Apple Pay (technologies that scammers have not yet mastered, and which remain the most secure).
  • Set limits for transactions with the card: limit amounts for withdrawing cash, payment by card on the Internet and money transfers. Thus, even if the scammers copy the card or its data, it will not be possible to steal money from the account.
  • When withdrawing money from the ATM, always close the keypad when entering the PIN-code, so that the PIN cannot be filmed by a hidden camera.
  • When using the ATM, pay attention to its appearance. On the ATM screen, there is usually a photo of the card reader. If the appearance of the card reader differs from the one indicated on the photo – do not use such an ATM!
  • If the ATM did not give money, do not leave the ATM, but contact the bank. Follow the recommendations of a bank employee. Check the hole for issuing money in case there is a fraudulent tab.
  • If you suspect the card was copied or scammed, immediately block it (call the bank or do it in your Internet banking). The second option is to change the PIN of the card.
  • Connect mobile banking to receive SMS-messages about all transactions with the card.

In 2017, Ukraine implemented the National Program to Promote Security of Electronic Payments and Safecard Card Payments.

The program was implemented by EMA Association with the assistance of the US State Department. The purpose of the program is to raise awareness of Ukrainian citizens about the threats of payment fraud, as well as to increase the culture of card payments in Ukraine.

Do you want to be aware of what to do and what to avoid in Ukraine? – Hire a local

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Kate Dobromishev

Tour Guide in Guide me UA / English language / Private Tours in Kyiv

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