Bank omitted payer in descriptor for Fast payments

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The Straits Times, 23 Dec
Forum, Pg A16



We refer to Mr Raja Rajendra’s letter (Banking: Changes without prior notification caused undue stress, Dec 15).


Mr Rajendra and his wife used to receive their CPF Life payments through Giro every month. Giro payments are sometimes delayed because it is not available on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays. Therefore, for more timely payouts, the Central Provident Fund Board (CPFB) has switched to the more modern Fast payment which is available on all days.


Regardless of the mode of payment, almost all the major banks have a payment descriptor showing both the payer and the purpose, that is, “CPF Board” and “LIFE Payment” respectively. Mr Rajendra’s bank happens to be the only major bank that has omitted the payer from the descriptor for Fast payments. Such individual bank practices are beyond CPFB’s control. Nonetheless, we have contacted Mr Rajendra’s bank and they have agreed to look into incorporating the payer information into future Fast payment descriptors.


We have reached out to Mr Rajendra and he has confirmed that in fact the payment descriptor for both him and his wife included the text “LIFE Payment”. Both his and his wife’s December payout quantum, accurate to two decimal places, are also exactly the same as their previous monthly CPF Life payouts. Potential scammers are unlikely to know their CPF Life payout quantum to such a level of precision. That said, we commend Mr Rajendra for his vigilance in looking out for potential scams. If he is ever in doubt about the origins of any payment, we advise him to call his own bank to clarify.



Tan Chui Leng

Group Director (Retirement Income Group)

Central Provident Fund Board