We’re introducing a name checking service called Confirmation of Payee (CoP). It aims to protect against Authorised Push Payment (APP) scams and reduce the number of payments which are made by mistake.

When you make a one-off payment, set up a new regular payment or amend an existing payment, it lets you check you’re paying the right person or business. Letting you see if the name matches who they say they are.

CoP also allows a person or business sending you a payment to check your name matches your account. 

How will name checking affect payments I'm sending?

We’re already responding to requests sent by other banks for payments you’re receiving.

By 31 March 2020, we’ll be asking for checks by other banks on payments you’re making.

You’ll see this new feature whenever you’re making payments using online or mobile banking from your personal or business accounts.

What happens with payments I'm expecting?

When someone is paying you for the first time or they’re making changes to the payment instruction details, they’ll be asked to confirm if your account is a business or personal account.

We’ll be asked to:

  • confirm if your account name is correct
  • confirm it matches the name on the payment instruction
  • confirm the account type is correct

The payment sender will be told how closely the information matches. They’ll then be able to decide whether they want to make the payment, or not proceed with making the payment at that time, allowing them to check the details.

If they get a match

They know your account is your personal or business account and have used the correct account name - they can proceed with the payment.

If they get a close match

They’ve used a similar name. We’ll share your account name with the sender’s bank and this will be given to the sender. They can decide whether to make the payment or to check with you.

If you have any concerns about name sharing or have any concerns about security, please contact us for more information.

If they don't get a match

They should check with you before making the payment - but they can still go ahead with the payment if they wish to.

Some exceptions:

If the payment sender’s bank is not registered for Confirmation of Payee, or is not quite ready to send requests to us, then they won’t see any change to their payment process and will be able to pay you as they do today. Where the Confirmation of Payee name check isn’t available, an onscreen message will confirm that to the other person.

What should I do to help anyone paying me?

Is your account for personal use or for your business?

When sharing your account details for a payment include your account type. If you’re unsure of your account type, please check with us.

Is the name they're inputting correct?

The name we hold for your account might not be the name the person is inputting. For example, they may be inputting Jim but your account name is James or they may know you as Jim the plumber but your business account is James Smith Plumbing Limited.

If you’re not sure, you can check your account by:

  • logging on to online banking
  • checking your statement

For joint accounts, the full first and last name of either individual will ensure the name check is made.

What is an Authorised Push Payment?

This is when a bank is instructed to make a payment from one account to another without using a debit or credit card. The bank is also known as a payment services provider or PSP.

How do APP scams work?

An APP scam is when a fraudster tricks victims into sending money to someone it’s not intended for. Sometimes they send money to someone for what they thought was a genuine purpose, but was actually fraudulent.

Payments related to APP scams can be made over the phone, online or in person and most are completed instantly.

We’re working closely with other industry partners to introduce the new CoP service to help protect you from scams like this.

Benefits of name checking

The Confirmation of Payee service gives you greater security when you’re making online payments.

With name checking, you can make sure the name of the person or business you’re paying matches the name held on the account.

Here are some other warning signs which may mean you’re being targeted by fraudsters:

  • payment requests from someone you don’t know
  • being put under pressure to make a payment
  • changes being made to the details on account you’re paying
  • being asked to continue with a payment even though the details don’t match

Further assistance

There are a number of organisations who can provide help and give advice about Confirmation of Payee.