A group of Senate Democrats, led by Elizabeth Warren, have urged financial regulators to take action against fraud related to Zelle, a peer-to-peer payments service owned by seven of the largest banks in the US through Early Warning Services.
Despite being hugely popular, with $629 billion in transactions facilitated in 2022, the senators claim Zelle has also opened the door to fraud and scams. In a letter to regulators, the senators called for a review of customer reimbursement and anti-money laundering practices among depositary institutions participating in the Zelle network. The senators also raised concerns that institutions are forcing customers to pay for fraudulent activities rather than making them whole, and called for institutions to comply with key consumer protection and AML laws. Early Warning Services responded that they are regularly supervised and examined by the OCC and CFPB, and that more than 99.9% of Zelle payments have been sent without any report of fraud or scams, thanks to robust consumer protection measures and the cooperation of the participating institutions.