With paying out pensions, the beginning of the month is the busiest time for banks. However, April's pensions doling-out day saw a third less taken from cash machines. At the same time, the elderly are being targeted by fraudsters more, it is reported.
During the period of April 3-6, when pensions were paid out, 30 percent less cash was taken out from ATMs, and the overall amount of transactions was 45 percent lower.
According to the first conclusions made by theSEB bank, using other bank services has also changed a lot during the crisis. Using cash has decreased 25 percent over the period of a month, and card transactions have fallen 30 percent.
"We noted with joy that the request to avoid mass gatherings made by the Estonian media, official institutions and banks, had been heeded, and statistics on the day after giving out the pensions really demonstrate this," Member of the Board of SEB Ainar Leppänen said in a press release.
The transactions made in grocery stores have also decreased, but according to statistics, the shopping basket size has increased. The average amount of card payments has increased by 12 percent, which means that fewer transactions are made, but the sums have risen.
Banking Association warns against cash fraud
It is strongly recommended that the elderly and people with chronic illnesses stay at home during the emergency situation. In connection with this, fraud is on the up, which often involves offering supposed assistance to the elderly with their banking operations and in that way finding out victims' bank card details and PIN codes, the Estonian Banking Association says.
"Unfortunately, it is already all too easy to drain an account. Certainly, no one should deal with their money with people they don´t know, no matter how polite and helpful these people may seem," Head of the Banking Association's Information Security Committee Tiit Hallas said.
At the same time, the association asks people to watch over their elderly relatives, to offer them help if possible, and to warn them of possible fraud schemes.
Editor: Roberta Vaino