The only instances in which Absa is permitted to disclose customer information is when it is:
1. Required by law
This most often relates to government tax reporting requirements or in terms of a court order or if required in terms of legislation or in accordance with the common law. Absa will, however, in all instances required by law, only disclose the information specifically requested.
2. Necessary to protect Absa's interests
This will not be used as a reason for disclosing information about a customer or a customer's accounts (including name and address) to anyone else, including other companies in the Absa Group for marketing purposes. However, basic procedures that protect Absa's interests sometimes lead to the disclosure of specific customer information to third parties for example, returning a cheque due to insufficient funds in an account.
3. In the public interest
Sometimes Absa is asked to disclose customer information for matters of public interest, e.g. to assist in the prevention of crimes. Before complying with these requests, Absa takes every precaution to ensure the authorities involved have legitimate grounds to make such a request.
4. Credit reference agencies
Information about a customer's personal debt owed to Absa may be disclosed to credit reference agencies, where the customer has fallen behind with payments and has not made proposals satisfactory to Absa for repayment of debt following formal demand or where the customer has given Absa written consent or where the customer has a cheque referred to drawer, the information is placed on a cheque verification service.
5. Privacy statement applying to specific services
Absa business units or subsidiaries may have their own privacy policies because the nature of the service or products demands a deviation from this policy. These specific policies will apply to and exclusively govern the customer's use of the particular service or product.
6. Third parties
Except as outlined in the section dealing with "Sharing Customer Information", Absa will never sell customer information to any other external party. It is important to note that where customer information is provided for marketing services, it is only done so with your consent as described above. In addition, third parties chosen by any member within the Absa Group are taken through strict due diligence processes in order to ensure that the customer information is handled securely.
7. Email communication
Absa may use customer information to send the customer information on new services or products that may be of interest to the customer and from time to time will mail, email or SMS information to the customer about Absa, Absa products and services or on the Absa Group and its products or services.
Remember, regular non-encrypted email is not secure. For this reason Absa will not include confidential account information in an email response.
Absa will further never request the customer, via the use of email, to provide Absa with personal information, such as your account number; PIN or password, etc.