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How to prevent e-transfer fraud

E-transfers are a great way to send money – you can pay back a friend, send money to a family member, or receive payments through email or text message. But even though e-transfers are considered secure, criminals have found ways to use them to steal money. So how can you prevent this?

What is e-transfer fraud?

When you send an e-transfer, you fill in the contact and payment details, plus a security question with an answer that only you and your contact know. Then, your contact gets a message saying there’s an e-transfer for them. Once they answer the security question correctly, they can deposit the money directly into their account.

E-transfer fraud occurs when a third party intercepts a transfer by hacking into a person’s email account and correctly guessing or obtaining the answer to the security question. Then, they can deposit the money themselves and it never gets to the intended recipient.

How to prevent e-transfer fraud

  • Make sure you’re sending it to the right email account.

  • Choose a security question with an answer that isn’t easy to guess. This means avoiding things like names, birthdays, hometowns – don’t use anything that someone could guess by looking at your social media profiles.

  • Don’t include the security question’s answer in the e-transfer message or send it in another email to your contact.

  • Protect your email’s security too – don’t stay logged in when you walk away from your computer, or use a password that’s easy to guess.

  • Avoid using e-transfers to pay for products and services. E-transfers are like cash transactions – it’s very hard to dispute or refund them.

  • Take advantage of other security features – like Meridian’s security alerts, which you can set up in Online Banking and in our Mobile App.

What to do if you suspect fraud

If you suspect someone has cracked your password or if you suspect any loss, theft or unauthorized use of your account, contact Meridian immediately at 1-866-592-2226.


Learn more about how Meridian protects you

Our commitment to privacy and security
How to create a strong password
Protect yourself against phishing scams