Al Rayan Bank warns that Ramadan scams may increase due to Covid-19

23 April 2020

The UK’s largest and longest-established Sharia compliant bank, Al Rayan Bank, has issued advice to customers who might find themselves targets of Ramadan-based financial scams, alongside guidance on how to protect themselves.

Observed by more than 3 million Muslims in the UK, the holy month of Ramadan, which commences tomorrow, is a time when Muslims tend to increase their charitable giving. This is known as Zakat, one of the five pillars of Islam whereby Muslims provide an annual donation to those less fortunate than themselves.

During this month of fasting, prayer and reflection, it is predicted Muslims will donate over £100 million to charity. But due to current social restrictions a result of COVID-19, almost all of these donations and campaigns are expected to be moved online or by telephone, which Al Rayan Bank believes poses an increased risk of scams.

More than 500 coronavirus-related scams and over 2,000 phishing attempts were shared with the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau in early April. Al Rayan Bank predicts that this will continue throughout Ramadan, with the Muslim community deemed one of the most charitable in the UK.

Warning customers to be extra vigilant, Maisam Fazal, Chief Commercial Officer at Al Rayan Bank, said, “Ramadan is a time for celebration, appreciation, and charitable giving, but in the current climate, it unfortunately also means people will likely be more vulnerable to a large number of scams as donations move online.

“In order to ensure generous donations given out by the Muslim community over Ramadan are able to reach their intended cause, we encourage our customers to be watchful and aware. Check the legitimacy of the charities’ serial numbers via the charities commission website, don’t click on suspicious emails and never feel pressured to donate. It’s regrettable that these measures need to be put in place, but we must stay one step ahead.”

In order to help prevent scams and minimise financial loss, Al Rayan Bank has launched a campaign to raise customers’ awareness of the risk of potential email or online scams, telephone scams, and even doorstep scams.

To ensure all Zakat donations reach their intended cause, the Bank is also advising customers to check the charity they’re donating to is registered with the Fundraising Regulator.

Al Rayan Bank’s website, www.alrayanbank.co.uk, provides a range of advice on scam-related issues, including ways to identify each type of scam, what to do if customers find themselves a victim, and useful contacts.

Avoid Ramadan scams

Go Back