Commonwealth Bank supports customers with stronger ‘NetBank’ security

3 October 2006

The Commonwealth Bank is continuing to introduce new security improvements - including two-factor authentication - for its online banking service NetBank.

The latest improvements are part of the Bank’s continuous program to review customer security and privacy. The Bank has confirmed that two factor authentication will be progressively rolled out from January 2007.

"The Commonwealth Bank remains vigilant and committed to constantly improve NetBank’s capabilities and security measures," said Michael Cameron, Commonwealth Bank Group Executive – Retail Banking Services.

In the last month, the Bank has introduced improved security features for NetBank including:

  • Hawk-I – a sophisticated fraud detection system designed to provide additional protection for customers when banking online.
  • A licensing agreement with Sophos - the provider of a leading early warning system that automatically identifies and proactively alerts organisations to new phishing scams.

Mr Cameron said that the new fraud detection system had already stopped a recent fraud attempt on individual NetBank customer accounts which were compromised as the result of an Internet virus.

"Through our new fraud detection system we were able to quickly identify the attempted fraud, secure affected customer NetBank facilities, contact customers and confirm transactions. As a result, all facilities were immediately secured and no financial losses were incurred by our customers or the Bank."

Mr Cameron said improvements would continue in October, with even further verification of third-party payments for possible fraud.

"This will cause problems for fraudsters who exploit instant third-party transfers" said Mr Cameron.

The next wave of security improvements will be completed in early 2007 when both security tokens and mobile phone SMS authentication codes will be introduced.

"NetBank is Australia’s leading online banking channel and offering customers a choice of SMS or tokens will ensure we match our security solution to the lifestyle of our NetBank customers" said Mr Cameron.



For more information contact:

Bryan Fitzgerald
General Manager, Media and Issues Management
Commonwealth Bank
Phone: (02) 9378 2663
Mob: 0414 789 649


Notes to Editors:NetBank is Australia’s most visited online banking site with more than 2.3 million registered users.

In the past 12 months the Commonwealth Bank has introduced personal identification questions, an expanded range of email alerts, a rolling back of some NetBank service charges and a facility to reduce third party, BPAY and international money transfer limits in NetBank.