All banks in Saudi Arabia will halt opening new accounts for clients through online platforms “until further notice” as per new instructions from the Saudi Central Bank (SAMA), Saudi Gazette learned from well-informed sources.
The new instructions which will come into effect as of Sunday, April 10, include opening accounts for individuals and institutions as part of new measures to tackle fraud.
SAMA told the banks and financial institutions that opening new accounts shall be introduced only through their branches, which allows bank employees to verify the identity of the person who is opening the account.
As per the new instructions, non-Saudi clients will no longer be able to add money transfer beneficiaries online. Instead, they have to do it in person. The new measures also include limiting the allowed amount of money that can be transferred online to SR60,000. Transit time for domestic wires will be two hours while it will be 24 hours for international wires.
SAMA urged banks operating in the Kingdom to implement some precautionary measures to protect clients from financial fraud. The move comes under the Saudi Central Bank Law that aims to support the banking sector’s stability and enhance customer confidence.