Cashless policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, aimed at reducing the volume of physical cash circulating in the Nigerian economy with e-payment options saw the introduction of daily bank deposit/withdrawal limits above which account holders pay huge transaction costs.
CBN Director, Banking and Payments System Department, Dipo Fatokun was quoted as saying: “the initiative was facing some resistance as a result of prevailing cash culture, where people preferred to transact business with cash rather than electronic system of payment which is safer and more convenient.”
Despite these challenge as highlighted by the CBN, the bank was recognized as the first financial institution in the country to achieve a transaction volume of 100 million transactions in a month by Interswitch Transnational, Africa’s leading integrated payment and transaction processing company.
The feat which was achieved in December 2015, represents the total transactions processed by FirstBank’s Front End Processor running on the Interswitch transaction switching platform which seamlessly links all financial institutions in Nigeria to facilitate better and quicker transactions across all platforms.
With over 10 million customers, industry watchers say the achievement by FirstBank clearly aligns with its strategic intent to promote financial inclusion, and support the cashless policy drive of CBN.
The Bank’s Group Head, e-business, Chuma Ezirim, FirstBank remains committed to lead the drive to move the Nigerian economy away from traditional cash and other generic payment means to modern technological varieties in e-Payment.
In a reaction, Divisional CEO, Switching and Processing, Interswitch, Akeem Lawal said, “It really says something about the strength and development of electronic transactions in Nigeria that a single banking partner can record 100 million transactions in a single month.”
Fatokun who spoke at a seminar for finance journalists and editors on Tuesday in Ibadan said the volume of attempted fraud rose by 635% in 2015, however, the attempted value and actual loss had dropped by 43.6% and 63.7% respectively. The value of actual loss to fraud dropped to N2.25billion in 2015 as against N6.21billion lost in 2014.
The Director attributed the decline in fraud to the introduction of Bank Verification Number (BVN), the beefed up security features on the electronic payment channels, among others.

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