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April 30, 2007 | by  | in News | [ssba]

Kiwibank told off for encouraging student bank heists

Complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority over Kiwibank’s ‘Aussie Bank Heist’ advertisements targeted at tertiary students have been partly upheld.

One of the advertisements consists of five steps on how to pull off an Aussie bank ‘heist’, including signing up for an account at an Australian-owned bank, getting the tertiary account freebies and then canceling the account to sign up at Kiwibank.

The advertisements also made negative comments about Kiwibank’s competition, including: “The foreign owned banks (that’s nearly all of them) have been getting the better of Kiwi students for quite some time” and “those Aussie bankers are out to get you”.

Complainant T. Pryor of ASB Bank Ltd said: “There is no explanation of why or how foreign owned banks have been getting the better of Kiwi students. In addition, the comparison of foreign owned banks to Kiwibank’s tertiary products has not been substantiated in any way…”

“We do not believe this encourages socially responsible behaviour…[F]or a New Zealand bank to embark on a campaign, albeit an attempt of humour, that makes light of bank robberies i.e “heists”, is quite alarming…”

The Advertising Standards Authority found that statements within the advertisements breached its Code of Comparative Advertising, in that they were not “factual and informative”, “disparaged competing products and services” and “identified the competition in a manner and tone that degraded their products and services”, and ruled to uphold in part a complaint by ASB Bank.


About the Author ()

With her take-no-prisoners, kick-ass attitude, former News Editor Laura McQuillan adequately makes up for her lack of stature. Roaming the corridors (and underground tunnels) of the University by day, and hunting vampires and Nazi war criminals by night, McQuillan will stop at nothing to bring you the freshest news.

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