NAB launches team for vulnerable customers

NAB has created a specialist team of bankers dedicated to recognising and responding to signs a customer is experiencing vulnerability.

Called the NAB Customer Support Hub, its aim is to help detect the early stages of financial hardship, such as scam, fraud, domestic and family violence, elder abuse, low financial literacy and gambling addiction, NAB said.

"We want to be there for our customers no matter their circumstances and this new team of bankers provides support well beyond that of traditional financial hardship assistance," said chief legal and commercial counsel Sharon Cook.

She said the bank assisted 1.4 million customers every year that experienced financial difficulty due to injury, illness and unemployment.

"This Support Hub enables us to be more proactive by identifying hurdles our customers are experiencing and providing them with extra care," she said.

Cook said the Support Hub was recently expanded after a successful trial in June that helped more than 500 customers.

"By referring customers to community partners, we have been able to provide much needed assistance to those experiencing elder and financial abuse, mental illness and credit card debt," she said.

At the request of customers, NAB has also applied restrictions on gambling transactions on credit or debit cards that prevents them going further into debt.

Creating the Support Hub is one of the actions NAB has taken after developing its new Customer Vulnerability Framework, which sets out to create "more inclusive banking services and better support for customers in hard times".

This framework sets out how NAB will help older customers; make banking easier for customers experiencing vulnerability; design more inclusive products and services; and build the capacity of all its employees to provide better support.

Read more: NABSharon Cook
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