DBS Hong Kong staff probed for getting customers' data to promote loans: Apple Daily

People walk outside the DBS bank near Causeway Bay in Hong Kong.
People walk outside the DBS bank near Causeway Bay in Hong Kong. PHOTO: ST FILE

HONG KONG - Some 20 employees of DBS Hong Kong are being investigated by Hong Kong's anti-corruption agency, for allegedly using bribery to obtain personal data of the bank's clients for marketing purposes.

Hong Kong tabloid Apple Daily reported on Thursday (Dec 9) that the city's Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) had questioned some of the bank's direct sales team members.

They had allegedly used bribery to get the personal data of DBS clients. The data was then passed on to a call centre in mainland China which held telephone promotions for high-interest loans. Commissions were then shared between the direct sales team and the call centre.

The paper reported that recently, a number of Hong Kong customers had complained about receiving loan marketing calls from people claiming to be DBS staff.

After carrying out internal investigations, the bank found that most of the telephone calls originated from a call centre in the mainland, even though DBS has never worked with the centre on telephone promotions.

A report was later made to the ICAC.

When contacted, a DBS spokesman told The Straits Times on Thursday (Dec 8): "DBS Hong Kong takes our obligations to curtail financial crime very seriously and the bank will cooperate fully with any law enforcement agency on their investigations."

"Together with our regulators and the industry, we intend to intensify our efforts in collaborating and fighting against financial crime."

Earlier this week, ICAC raided the homes of several current and former DBS employees.

An ICAC spokesman told Apple Daily that the agency does not discuss individual cases.