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Financial and domestic abuse

If you're worried about being the victim of financial abuse, we're here to help you take back control of the way your money is managed.

What is financial abuse?

Financial abuse is when someone exerts control over another adult's finances. They do this to reduce their victim’s independence, take advantage of them and in some cases make their victim reliant on them.

Anyone can suffer financial abuse at the hands of someone they have a relationship with. This could be a family member, carer or someone who has third party authority such as a power of attorney.

HSBC UK has signed up to UK Finance’s Code of Practice on financial abuse. Our aim is to support victims of financial abuse so they can regain control of their finances.

Know how to spot it

These are just some of the examples of financial abuse.

“My partner took out a credit card using my details and built up debt without me knowing.”

“I started to notice my cheque book was being used to pay bills that weren’t mine.”

“I didn’t have control of my debit card or access to online banking.”

Read the UK Finance guide ‘It’s your money’:

Get help now

Need some guidance?

If you’re concerned about your situation or need help with your finances, talk to us. Chat to us using the mobile banking app, or log on to online banking and look for the Chat icon on the right hand side of the page. You can also call us on 03457 404 404 to talk about how we can support you.

Think you've been a victim of fraud?

If you’ve been a victim of fraud, or you think someone has taken out credit in your name, please let us know as soon as possible by calling 03457 404 404.

External support

We’ve listed some steps to take on your own if you prefer not to speak to anyone below. There are also some organisations that are good at listening and giving advice

Ways to protect yourself

Cards, PINs and passwords

If you’re concerned that someone else has your card details or PIN, we can send you a new card. You can also change your PIN at an ATM. You may also want to change your log on details for online and phone banking to make sure that your accounts are more secure.

Receiving post from us

We understand that it might be difficult for you to receive post at your home address. If this is the case, you can opt for online statements. You can also change your address so that your post goes to a trusted friend or family’s home instead. You’ll need to be registered for online banking to do this, or if you’re set up for phone banking, give us a call.

Managing your account with a third party

You may want to think about removing a third party if you’re worried about the access they have to your money or the financial decisions they are making on your behalf.

If you would like to have support looking after your finances from a trusted person, you can arrange for someone else to have third party access. Read more about how third party access works.

Joint accounts

If you have a joint account and you’re no longer together, you can ask us to change the way it’s set up. Both parties would have to sign for any transactions going out of the account. This means your regular payments would still be made, but nothing else could go out without your knowledge. You can also ask us to suspend the account to make sure that no transactions are made.

When you’re ready to think about your financial independence again, we can open a new account for you. Find out about ways to open an account. Call us on 03457 404 404 to discuss opening an account with a non-geographic sort code.

Credit cards

If you have an HSBC credit card, you should check if you’re the primary or secondary cardholder. The primary cardholder is responsible for the repayment of all money spent by any secondary cardholders you might have nominated. If you’re in any dispute, we’d recommend that you remove the secondary cardholder as soon as possible to make sure nothing else can be spent on the card.

Debts

If you’re having difficulties with paying your debts because of an abusive situation, please contact us on 0345 850 0622 to talk about what we can do to help.

Lines are open 08:00 to 18:00 Monday to Friday and 08:30 to 16:00 on Saturday (excluding Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day).

And if your financial situation is making it hard to leave, check our guide on what benefits you could be entitled to.

You can also educate yourself on managing your money and bank account with our banking basics guide (PDF).

Credit file

If you’re concerned that someone has taken credit in your name, you can get a copy of your credit report online or from one of our branches. You might want to think about getting a notice of dissociation from the main credit reference agencies, Experian, TransUnion and Equifax. This will help to separate you from any joint financial arrangements. You can also register with the fraud prevention organisation Cifas. It will then be able to alert you if any credit applications are made in your name.

Browsing history

If you’re concerned someone is monitoring your internet history or what you do online, you might want to remove your browsing history. 

Where can I get additional support?

There are a number of organisations that can provide help and support with financial and domestic abuse. 

It's easy to answer your query online. Visit our Help page to find out how.