Widespread implementation of the UK’s new Confirmation of Payee (CoP) service has been announced by the payments regulator.

Confirmation of Payee helps protect consumers and businesses from certain types of fraud and misdirected payments by letting them know if the account name they have entered matches the account name of the recipient.

The Confirmation of Payee service is intended to give businesses and consumers greater assurance that they are sending payments to the intended recipient

Today (1 July 2020) the payments regulator, The Payment System Regulator, confirmed widespread implementation of name-checking system, Confirmation of Payee.

What if sometimes I’m Robert, Bob, Rob, Bert or Rabbie? 

When making online payments it is vital you know the exact name of the person you are trying to pay, otherwise you may find it difficult to make the payment and you’ll miss out on the comfort of knowing that you are paying the person you intend to.

Find out more about: Confirmation of Payee.

The widespread implementation of this additional name-checking provides a new, added layer of protection for consumers. As well as helping stop fraudsters from committing devastating crimes, it will also help people avoid paying the wrong person accidentally.

We’re pleased to have reached this significant point, and I welcome the work that the directed Banks and Building Societies have put in to reach this point. Their customers can now make payments with greater assurance that their money is going to the person they intended.

Chris Hemsley, Managing Director, PSR

Reducing Authorised Push Payment Fraud

The implementation of Confirmation of Payee marks a significant milestone in reducing Authorised Push Payment (APP) scams. This new service is designed to make it harder for fraudsters to pretend to be someone else, helping to reduce fraud (particularly APP scams) and accidentally misdirected payments.

CoP means the members of the UK’s six biggest banking groups can check the name on a payee’s account against the sort code and account number.

Customers setting up a new payee will now be able to confirm that the name they’ve entered matches the one on the account they’re intending to pay. This helps to prevent payments going to the wrong account, whether accidentally or due to fraudsters. 

The PSR has also seen the first non-directed banks introduce CoP, with Monzo and Starling having started to introduce the full service to their customers.

The regulator is now turning its attention to the impact of CoP on fraud prevention before assessing what further action may be required. 

The PSR state that making sure people are appropriately protected against fraud will continue to play a significant part in their work and the regulator will work with industry to drive further implementation across all payment service providers as well as supporting other efforts to make life harder for fraudsters. 

For more visit the PSR’s announcement: Confirmation of Payee – Implementation

Have you tried the new service?

I tested Confirmation of Payee last night across four banks – although very limited test the exercise provided an interesting experience.

Two banks performed the CoP check and two didn’t (the mandated bank did performed the check).

Based on variants of the beneficiary name I received a mixture of match / no match / partial match responses – all of when were helpful in determining whether (or not) the money would arrive in the correct bank account.

Payments, Payments, Payments

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