144 thousand shekels stolen from the account – the bank does not return the money

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 144,000 shekels stolen from account - bank does not return money

One morning, a Campioline accountant in Or Yehuda was checking the details of a checking account, and her vision went dark. Trembling, she approached the owner and told him that the check she mailed a month and a half ago for NIS 2,296 for the garage union had been stolen, forged, and changed to NIS 144,296, which had been paid to an unknown company.< br />
Both hurried to the branch of Apoalim Bank, which was managing the account, with a copy of the original check, where they were asked to file a police report and send a confirmation of the application to the bank, explaining that the check had indeed been forged.

On the same the day the bank credited the stolen amount to the account, and even indicated in the loan that it was made for a “technical return”; with a note that it was fake.

But, to the surprise of the company, four days after the incident, Apoalim Bank decided not to return the money, and the amount was withdrawn from the client's account without his knowledge. When Compuline called again to find out why her account had been charged again, again without her knowledge or consent, they were told that the bank had decided to accept the check no matter what.

In the letter , sent by the bank two weeks later, the bank explained that “according to reasonable bank verification, it is impossible to notice a change in the check”, that is, according to them, the check was forged so well that they could not figure it out. In addition, the bank accused the customer of “taking the risk” because he mailed the check.

Apoalim Bank argues that since Compuline discovered the theft late, it cannot oblige Mizrachi Bank to return the money – the bank that manages the account to which NIS 144,296 was transferred. The bank refused to take responsibility for not bothering to find out from the client in advance and confirm the amount of the transfer.

If earlier the client had to physically come to the bank and hand over checks, today he can send in an application to the translation is a photograph, not the original receipt, which makes it very easy to forge it.

When asked by the Bank of Israel how many checks are counterfeited in this way per year, they said they had no data, which explains why they do not understand the problematic of this issue. The bank also refused to confirm the fact that the removal of the protection of original checks, the same magnetic strip that should prevent counterfeiting, greatly facilitates the possibility of counterfeiting them, and therefore the use of checks today is not as safe as it used to be.

The Bank of Israel tried to streamline the system and free people from going to the bank to deposit checks, but in doing so created a big problem: if sending a photocopy of a check via an app is enough today, who should protect us from counterfeiting? A little less than a year ago, the Bank of Israel announced that it plans to make it possible to transfer checks digitally, which would eliminate the need to have a checkbook and physically transfer the payment. But this has not happened yet, which provides great opportunities for scammers.

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