Indsigelse mod kortbetalinger til udenlandsk investeringsvirksomhed, der blev gennemført som ”3D Secure” betalinger.

Sagsnummer:22/2021
Dato:23-11-2021
Ankenævn: Henrik Waaben, Mette Lindekvist Højsgaard, George Wenning, Jacob Ruben Hansen, Lisbeth Baastrup Burgaard.
Klageemne:Betalingstjenester - ikke-vedkendte hævninger
Ledetekst:Indsigelse mod kortbetalinger til udenlandsk investeringsvirksomhed, der blev gennemført som ”3D Secure” betalinger.
Indklagede:Danske Bank
Øvrige oplysninger:
Senere dom:
Pengeinstitutter

Indledning

Denne sag vedrører indsigelse mod kortbetalinger til udenlandsk investeringsvirksomhed, der blev gennemført som ”3D Secure” betalinger.

Sagens omstændigheder

Klageren var kunde i Danske Bank, hvor hun blandt andet havde et Visa/dankort.

Den 22. maj 2016 foretog klageren en betaling på 250 euro (EUR) med Visa/dankortet. Betalingsmodtageren var et udenlandsk firma A. Betalingen vedrørte investering.

Den 26. maj 2016 blev der foretaget yderligere tre betalinger på 1.000 EUR, 501 EUR og 500 EUR, i alt 2.001 EUR, til A. Ved blandt andet e-mail af 8. juni 2016 til A gjorde klageren indsigelse mod transaktionerne på i alt 2.001 EUR.

Den 25. juli 2016 udfyldte og underskrev klageren en indsigelsesblanket til banken, hvor hun på tro- og love gjorde indsigelse mod de tre transaktioner på i alt 2.001 EUR. Klageren anførte, at hun alene havde foretaget transaktionen på 250 EUR til A. Klageren anførte endvidere blandt andet:

”…

De ringede for at ville hæve 500 - 501 - 1000 eur. Jeg sagde nej, jeg har ikke de penge. De ringede flere gange. Jeg sagde nej. Så så jeg at de havde hævet dem og spærrede kortet.

De ville sende pengene tilbage inden 5 dg. Der ville gå 5 dg. før jeg kunne se dem på konto. Jeg ringede igen og der ville gå 2 dg., men jeg har ikke fået dem.

…”

Den 10. august 2016 skrev banken følgende til klageren:

”…

Vi har kontaktet [A], som bekræfter at de delvis har modtaget den dokumentation fra dig som de kræver jf. deres handelsbetingelser.

Din sag vil blive undersøgt nærmere hos [A] og de vil kontakte dig. Vi vil anbefale dig at sende en mail til dem og bede om [status] på din sag.

Vi har forståelse for din situation, men så længe forretningen overholder deres handelsbetingelser, kan vi som bank ikke gøre noget. Vi håber du finder en løsning med [A].

Sagen betragtes som afsluttet.

…”

Den 20. december 2016 skrev klageren følgende til banken:

”…

Jeg har sendt det [A] ønsker, men har stadig ikke modtaget mine penge. Jeg har skrevet flere gange og sendt det på mail. Jeg har også sendt brevet jeg fik af banken.

…”

Den 8. juni 2017 udfyldte og underskrev klageren en indsigelsesblanket, hvor hun på tro- og love gjorde indsigelse mod to transaktioner med Visa/dankortet den 23. september 2016 på 2.000 og 1.000 amerikanske dollar (USD). Ifølge erklæringen havde klageren ikke foretaget transaktionerne. Betalingsmodtageren var et udenlandsk firma, B.

Ved brev af 10. marts 2020 gjorde klageren via en engelsksproget rådgiver indsigelse over for banken mod transaktioner på i alt 15.764 USD og i alt 4.401 EUR. Af brevet fremgik:

”…

Starting on the 6th May 2016, I fell victim to a fraudulent Crypto Currency / Forex / Binary Options Companies named [navne på 16 betalingsmodtagere, herunder A og B] (“the Companies”). Money was transferred from my account to the Companies via credit card for a total amount of 15,764 USD and 4,401 EUR utilizing your services.

I have enclosed copies of bank statements for ease of reference.

It is imperative that you reverse the transaction(s). I request a refund due to the following facts, all of which are non-regulated activities:

1. The Companies provided direct investment advice - not utilizing 3rd party recommendations.

2. The Companies offered investment services/advice not related to real market/exchange data (manufacturing false charts etc.).

3. The Companies performed misrepresentation - pretending to be regulated (fictitious agents names and location).

4. The Companies prohibited my ability to withdraw my funds.

5. The Companies were guaranteeing returns/yields (unrealistic ones).

6. The Companies furnished me with bonuses - which are not allowed to be given.

7. The Companies were trading on my behalf (use of remote control of my computer).

8. My money was not held in a segregated account.

9. The Companies did not advertise/disclosed/were not transparent enough regarding the statistical data representing the percentage of total client losses at the Companies.

10. The Companies did not mention the commission and overnight swaps.

11. The Companies did not read the risk disclosure prior to my deposit(s).

Please take notice that my funds were transferred through means of coercion and under false pretenses!

Attached, please find proof that the Companies are a scam artist and that the banking community in Denmark was alerted to this during the relevant time period.

What is egregious is that I have since found out that there were bulletins issued by the Belgium FSMA, Australia ASIC, UK FCA and SEC, Canada BCSC and OSC, Belize IFSC, Hong Kong SFC and other regulators worldwide; as well as consumer protection bureaus, warning the banking community against allowing the instructions of payments to the Companies.

Under the consumers protection law of EU – "Guarantees and Returns" – If you bought a product or a service online or outside of a shop (by telephone, mail order, from a door-to-door salesperson), you also have the right to cancel and return your order, for any reason and without a justification.

Additionally, as it is a scam, perpetrating to offer investment services - it cannot be regarded as a gambling and/or social gaming platform.

In accordance with Visa and MasterCard Schemes Core Rule No. 00046305.2.1.2., before allowing a Companies or merchant to accept payments – there must be a physical inspection of the listed premises of the business. It is apparent that the place of the business has never been examined and due diligence had never been executed.

…”

De vedhæftede/vedlagte kontoudskrifter var for perioden 1. maj 2016 - 31. maj 2017. På kontoudskrifterne var der markeret 11 transaktioner.

Den 17. september 2020 skrev banken følgende til klageren:

”Vi har undersøgt din sag og må desværre meddele, at vi ikke kan
hjælpe dig.
Når der opstår en tvist mellem køber og sælger i forbindelse med en børsmægler, værdipapirhandel/binært optionsselskab, er det et juridisk mellemværende mellem dig og virksomheden. Årsagen til dette er, at når du laver en aftale med sådan en virksomhed, accepterer du samtidig forretningens betingelser samt risiko for tab.

Vi har som bank ikke mulighed for at tilbageføre de midler, der er indsat på en investeringskonto, jf. kortbestemmelserne. Du har dog mulighed for at lave en udbetalingsanmodning på den officielle hjemmeside. Du skal derfor logge ind på ”din konto” og indsende de krævede id-oplysninger, jf. forretningsbetingelserne.

Vi anbefaler, at du spærrer dit kort (hvis du ikke allerede har gjort det) før du sender nogen form for følsomme informationer til virksomheden.
Virksomheden vil stadig kunne returnere midlerne til dit kort, selvom det er spærret. Oplys ikke nye eller yderligere kortoplysninger til virksomheden, da du derved muliggør nye køb.

Derefter kan du foretage en udbetalingsanmodning, hvis du har opfyldt vilkårene, jf. forretningsbetingelserne.

Vi håber, at du finder en løsning med virksomheden. Alternativt anbefaler vi, at du kontakter en advokat.”

Ved brev af 29. september 2020 fastholdt klageren via en engelsksproget rådgiver sin indsigelse over for banken. Af brevet fremgik i øvrigt:

”…

I am extremely dissatisfied by your callous dismissal of my claim.

Please escalate my dispute to a higher authority, as clearly what has exactly happened to me financially is of no concern to Danske Bank, or has been somehow misunderstood, and I would prefer to think it is the latter.

Your reasoning for rejecting my dispute that “We have investigated your case and unfortunately have to announce that we cannot help you. When a dispute arises between buyer and seller in connection with a stockbroker, securities trading / binary options company, it is a legal matter between you and the company. The reason for this is that when you make an agreement with such a company, you also accept the terms of the business as well as the risk of loss. As a bank, we do not have the opportunity to return the funds deposited in an investment account, cf. the card provisions.” Based on the foregoing, it is obvious that you absolutely do not take responsibility: you have authorized money transfer to the scammer without initiating any protective procedures or abiding to your obligations as a registered and licensed Payment Service Provider, hereinafter (“PSP”) as all PSPs (i.e. Danske Bank) are by law required to check acquired “Merchants” through proper Know-Your-Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money-Laundering (AML) procedures! It is apparent that the merchant (“the Company”) has never been examined by your organization! Also, there is no need for particularly intensive KYC/AML checks to identify illegal broker schemes and fraudulent operators. Alarm bells for PSPs must ring at the latest when investor warnings from regulatory watchdogs reach the market. And measures have to be taken to avoid punishment by regulators and courts which again confirms your irresponsibility in accordance with the law.

I am exercising my right to file a Charge-Back under reason code 13.5. I am also attaching testimonial evidence of other victims who have received similar shady treatment by the companies, including a specific mention of collusion with other questionable firms.

It is quite clear that not only are you unconcerned with the well-being of your clients, the emphasis you have applied to such a technicality is simply a facade so you do not have to show a crumb of good will towards your clients.

If you still refuse to file a charge-back due to a technicality, and good will towards your customers is clearly not a virtue that your institution values.

This was all a scam and the recipient simply pocketed the money, again, I apparently need to reiterate the fact that the money I transferred wasn’t used for any investment, trading, or purchasing shares as was promised to me, my money wasn’t used for paying for service which I didn’t get. I have tried on numerous occasions to reason with these scammers, but they do not respond, this is why I have approached you. My money wasn’t in use for any actions, it was simply transferred to the owner’s bank account. Since I didn’t purchase anything and I didn’t invest in anything, my money wasn’t in use for anything, it was simply pocketed by the beneficiary account holder.

It’s a shame that I – as a “simple” end client - without any cyber-power like yours – could have gathered all the evidence and present it in an organized manner which shows that A) we are dealing with sophisticated scammers and B) you didn’t do your job properly.

By choosing to reject/deny my claim, you are effectively acting on behalf of this unregulated and illegal scam merchant, which is verifiable through Belgian FSMA, Australian ASIC, UK FCA and SEC, Canadian BCSC and OSC, Belize IFSC, Hong Kong SFC. You are making a statement that it is perfectly acceptable to enable embezzlement, and provide a financial lifeline to criminal organizations. It is unreasonable to offload all responsibility and make the claim that all due diligence should have been mine (i.e. the same way it is inconceivable that you would transfer money to a terrorist organization and/or a money laundering operation).

By not agreeing to reimburse me, you are also sending a clear message that you have no issues with leaving your customers miserably victimized.

It is only logical to me that Danske Bank, as a licensed financial institution has a duty/obligation to perform charge-back and reimburse clients who fell prey to highly sophisticated and technologically advanced frauds.

I am emotionally devastated by your decision and it does NOT make ANY sense to me – when I transferred money to these evil FRAUDSTERS I did not know they are a scam – I discovered it later on.

It’s criminal and unjustifiable that Danske Bank is taking responsibility off their shoulders and offloading it to the client which is at their mercy (due to the client’s innocence, inexperience and lack of knowledge) – it is obvious that Danske Bank has “led the lamb to the slaughter” and there is no excuse for that.

You have also failed to take into consideration the progressive sophistication of fraud, as per the Financial Ombudsman Services announcement: “Banks and payment facilitators will have to take into account the “evolution and sophistication” of fraud. Refusals to refund in such circumstances will no longer be tolerated.”

Financial Ombudsman Services has warned – “It is unacceptable to claim that a customer has been "grossly negligent" just because they've fallen for a scam and the onus must be on banks and payment facilitators to enhance their security processes and software in order to keep our funds safe.”

The Company took advantage of my inexperience/innocence and coerced me to sign up with them which I did not fully understand as part of their schemes (which in retrospect is an elaborate fraudulent tactic). Most importantly - please take notice that my funds were transferred through means of coercion and under false pretenses!

Danske Bank should also advise customers on the risks of sending money offshore to people they don’t know, and the low likelihood of the money being recovered once the customer realizes they have been scammed. If a Danske Bank suspects a customer has been the potential victim of a scam, Danske Bank should attempt to contact them to discuss their circumstances and suggest a course of action. Danske Bank should support their customers by providing real-life examples of scams to help them spot if the same thing is happening to them!

Your behavior lacks professionalism, totally unregulated and sub-human. The public puts their total un-suspicious trust in your organization by taking a leap of faith that you will protect their life savings and apparently you illegally and evilly have taken advantage of your clients’ innocence and by that going against the pledge of the reason financial institutions were established in the first place.

This issue could have easily affected other clients of Danske Bank as well, and I just hope that none of them will go through the same terrible and disheartening experience – I am constantly thinking about this issue and seriously considering PUBLISHING your CRIMINAL misadministration, Rudeness and unwillingness to bear responsibility for your OWN misconduct on the Net/Forums/Reviews Sites/News­pa­pers­/Magazines/TV/Blogs/YouTube/Twitter- something I don’t want to do I just want my money back.

As your loyal customer who truly wants to continue to do business with you for the rest of my life, I am pleading with you to reconsider your previous decision and reimburse my account with the full amount so I do not need to take further action.

I am informing you now that I remain very unhappy and am strongly advising to take this opportunity to put things right for me. I am optimistic that you will pull through for me and take my words into serious reconsideration in a written reply within the next seven (7) business days.

…”

Den 22. oktober 2020 skrev banken følgende til klageren:

”…

Vi har tidligere modtaget indsigelser fra dig på den samme, eller lignende firmaer.
Vi meddelte dig på daværende tidspunkt at vi ikke havde mulighed for at hjælpe dig.

Reglerne for kortselskaberne er stadig de samme, og vi kan derfor heller ikke hjælpe dig, her 3-4 år efter.
Den charge-back kode du henviser til, kan vi ikke bruge, hverken nu eller dengang.

Vi må derfor afvise din indsigelse/klage.

…”

Parternes påstande

Den 21. januar 2021 har klageren indbragt sagen for Ankenævnet med påstand om, at Danske Bank skal godtgøre hende transaktionerne på i alt 15.764 USD og i alt 4.401 EUR.

Danske Bank har nedlagt påstand om frifindelse.

Parternes argumenter

Klageren har anført, at hun var udsat for svindel, og at banken bør dække hendes tab på i alt 15.764 USD og i alt 4.401 EUR.

Hun henviser i øvrigt til brevene af 10. marts 2020 og 29. september 2020 til banken.

Danske Bank har anført, at klageren ikke bør få medhold.

Det af klageren rejste krav på i alt 15.764 USD og i alt 4.401 EUR svarer til cirka 143.677 kroner. De af klageren fremhævede 11 transaktioner udgør i alt 71.280 kroner. Banken kan ikke identificere differencen på cirka 72.000 kroner, og klagerens tabsopgørelse bestrides af denne grund.

Det fremgår af klagerens brev af 29. september 2020 til banken, at klageren medgiver at have foretaget de pågældende transaktioner, men ikke mener at de overførte penge har været brugt til investeringer, som betalingsmodtagerne/firmaerne har lovet.

Betalingerne på 1.000 EUR, 501 EUR og 500 EUR, i alt 2.001 EUR, til A den 26. maj 2016 og betalingerne på 2.000 USD og 1.000 USD til B den 23. september 2016 blev godkendt via 3D Secure. Nets har over for banken bekræftet, at transaktionerne var korrekt registreret og bogført og ikke ramt af tekniske svigt eller andre fejl. Omstændighederne omkring disse i alt fem transaktioner, som klageren gjorde indsigelse mod i 2016 og 2017, er ikke tilstrækkeligt oplyst, og klageren har under klagesagen ikke fulgt bankens opfordring til at svare på konkrete spørgsmål om omstændighederne.

Der kan ikke længere gøres indsigelse over for de øvrige transaktioner, hvoraf to transaktioner var kontooverførsler, da der er indtrådt passivitet, og forholdet under alle omstændigheder må anses for forældet, da der er gået mere end tre år fra transaktionsdatoen, ligesom klageren ikke har rettet henvendelse til banken snarest muligt, jævnfør betalingslovens § 112, stk. 4.

For kontooverførsler er der ikke mulighed for chargeback efter reglerne i betalingslovens § 112, da der ikke er anvendt et betalingsinstrument.

Ankenævnets bemærkninger

Klageren var kunde i Danske Bank.

I 2016 og 2017 foretog klageren betalinger med Visa/dankort og ved kontooverførsler til udenlandske betalingsmodtagere med henblik på investering.

Klageren gjorde indsigelse mod transaktioner på 1.000 EUR, 501 EUR og 500 EUR til firma A den 26. maj 2016 og betalinger på 2.000 USD og 1.000 USD til firma B den 23. september 2016.

I 2020 rejste klageren på baggrund af yderligere transaktioner i 2016-2017 et erstatningskrav mod banken. Ankenævnet finder, at et eventuelt krav vedrørende disse transaktioner nu er forældet, jævnfør den treårige forældelsesfrist i forældelseslovens § 3. Klageren får allerede derfor ikke medhold i denne del af klagen.

For så vidt angår transaktionerne på 1.000 EUR, 501 EUR og 500 EUR, 2.000 USD og 1.000 USD har banken ikke påberåbt sig forældelse. Ankenævnet finder imidlertid, at en afklaring af, om banken helt eller delvis skal godtgøre klageren transaktionerne, ville forudsætte en bevisførelse, herunder i form af parts- og vidneforklaringer, som ikke kan ske for Ankenævnet, men som i givet fald må finde sted for domstolene. Ankenævnet kan derfor ikke behandle denne del af klageren, jævnfør § 5, stk. 3, nr. 4, i Ankenævnets vedtægter.

Ankenævnets afgørelse

Ankenævnet kan ikke behandle den del af klagen, der vedrører transaktionerne på 1.000 EUR, 501 EUR og 500 EUR den 26. maj 2016 samt 2.000 USD og 1.000 USD den 23. september 2016.

Klageren får i øvrigt ikke medhold i klagen.