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Other Policies and Notices

Notice: Scheme of Transfer
Whistleblowing Programme
How does Common Reporting Standard affect me?

CRS requires financial institutions around the world to determine where their customers are tax resident and report that information to the government.

CRS may affect you as an individual or business customer if you purchase or hold a policy that is within the CRS scope.

We will contact you to make a declaration regarding your tax residency if you are affected.

For more information on CRS, please refer to FAQs.
Additional information is also available via the OECD website, including Rules governing tax residence and the status of country commitments.



Frequently Asked Questions
  1. Why is CRS being introduced?
    CRS is designed to mitigate offshore tax evasion. It provides participating countries transparency on the financial assets held offshore by their tax residents. CRS is a reporting regime and is not designed with the objective of imposing additional taxes.

  2. How does CRS work?
    CRS requires financial institutions based in CRS participating countries to identify customer tax residencies and report financial accounts held directly or indirectly by foreign tax residents to the local tax authorities in the jurisdiction where the financial institutions are based. The local tax authorities (in participating countries) are expected to exchange this information with the relevant tax authority in a participating country.

  3. How does CRS affect my policies with Great Eastern?
    Great Eastern will request that impacted customers to complete a self-certification form that includes a declaration of their tax residency.

  4. What information will you be requested to provide?
    Under the CRS requirements, we will be asking for these information:
    • Name
    • Address
    • Place of birth* (for Individual and Controlling Persons)
    • Date of birth*(for Individual and Controlling Persons)
    • Country(ies) of tax residence
    • Taxpayer identification number(s)*
    • Place of registration/incorporation (for Entities)
    • Entity Type (for Entities)
    • Controlling Person Type for certain Entity Types (for Controlling Persons)
      * this does not apply in all participating countries and is subject to local law requirements
  5. Where can I access the forms related to CRS?
    Please refer to Forms Download.

  6. What is my tax residency?
    Tax residency refers to where you are resident for tax purposes and each country has its own criteria to determine it. Please consult your tax advisor or the OECD website for more information.

  7. What happens if I don’t provide my tax residency information to Great Eastern?
    If you do not provide the requested information / certification, regardless of you being an existing customer of Great Eastern or not, Great Eastern may not be able to issue certain policies to you.

  8. What happens if my tax residency changes?
    If there is any change in the information provided to Great Eastern, you are required to inform Great Eastern immediately so that we can advise you of further documentation required, if any.

  9. I don’t know my tax residency. What should I do?
    Regretfully, Great Eastern is unable to provide professional tax advice. Please refer to http://www.oecd.org/tax/automatic-exchange/crs-implementation-and-assistance/ or seek advice from a tax advisor.

  10. What happens I don’t have a tax identification number (TIN)?
    By regulation, there are only 2 circumstances in which a TIN is not required to be collected or reported:
    • a TIN is not issued by the relevant Reportable Jurisdiction; or 
    • the domestic law of the relevant Reportable Jurisdiction does not require the collection of the TIN issued by such Reportable Jurisdiction.
      However, in certain circumstances, you might not have a TIN temporarily or due to personal circumstances. In such instances, you would need to justify the absence of TIN.
  11. Is Great Eastern the only insurance companies asking me to certify my tax residency?
    No, all financial institutions in CRS participating countries are required to collect and report account holder information.

  12. How is my data safe with Great Eastern?
    Your data and privacy is important to us. For more information please view our Privacy Statement to find out how we collect and handle your personal data.

  13. Is FATCA and CRS related?
    Additional information for the CRS is still required to be provided even if you have already provided information under the United States government's Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) as these are different regulations with different requirements.

CRS Terms

Reportable information
The following will be reported to the local tax authority:

  • Personal information on the reportable person, i.e. name, address, Tax Identification Number (TIN), date of birth.
  • Financial account information, i.e. account number, balance, interest, dividends, other income and gross proceeds.

Legal enforcement of AEOI 
Each jurisdiction is able to decide whether it will implement AEOI or not. Consequently, AEOI is implemented on a country-by-country basis.

In addition, in order for two jurisdictions to be able to exchange information, they must have an intergovernmental agreement – a so-called Competent Authority Agreement (CAA) – in place.

Status of commitments
More than 100 jurisdictions have committed to the implementation of AEOI. However, the enforcement is subject to local law and needs to be enacted by every single jurisdiction.

The list with current status of commitments can be found under http://www.oecd.org/tax/transparency/AEOI-commitments.pdf.

Effective date

Jurisdictions committed to undertake first exchanges by 2017 (early adopter jurisdictions) are expected to implement the due diligence procedures as of 1 January 2016.

Jurisdictions committed to undertake first exchanges by 2018 (late adopter jurisdictions) are expected to implement the due diligence procedures as of 1 January 2017.

Scheme of Transfer

The Overseas Assurance Corporation Limited (OAC) will be transferring its life insurance business to The Great Eastern Life Assurance Company Limited (GEL) through a Scheme of Transfer (Scheme). Both are wholly-owned subsidiaries of Great Eastern Holdings Limited.

The Scheme, which has been approved by the Monetary Authority of Singapore, is subject to the approval of the High Court of Singapore. The Scheme is expected to take effect on 1 July 2017.

On the effective date of the Scheme, all life insurance policies insured with OAC will be transferred to GEL. The Scheme will not affect the benefits and coverage of these life insurance policies nor how these policies are administered.

The Scheme does not affect general insurance policies insured with OAC nor the benefits and coverage of these general insurance policies. On the effective date of the Scheme, in keeping with its greater focus on its general insurance business going forward, OAC will be renamed “Great Eastern General Insurance Limited”.

Should you wish to view the Scheme, please click here.

You may also refer to the “Frequently Asked Questions” regarding the Scheme here.

Should you have any queries, please contact our Customer Service Officers on 1800 248 2888 or email wecare-sg@greateasternlife.com.

We constantly test our systems to ensure that no possible breaches of our security can happen such that our customers' security and confidential policy information is not compromised in any way. We are always on the look-out for new technology that will increase the security of our systems so that our customers can rest assured that their valuable and confidential information is kept safe. 

C. Precautions You Should Take
1. Protect and safeguard your password 

  • Do not disclose personal, financial or credit card information to little known or suspect websites.
  • Change your password on a regular basis i.e. every 90 days.
  • Keep your password confidential and do not disclose it to anyone.
  • Do not choose a password that is easily guessed.
  • Password should not be based on user-id, personal telephone number, birthday or other personal information.
  • Do not use shared, public or Internet cafe computers to access e-Connect.
  • Never use the same password for other web-based services (Financial or Non-Financial) such as for email, online services, particularly when they related to different websites.
  • Do not write down your password or store it in computer hard-disk, diskette, mobile phone or other insecure means.
  • Change your password immediately if you suspect it has been disclosed to others or any unauthorized access. Do not use your password when someone else can see you keying it in.
  • Do not select the option on browsers for storing or retaining user name and password.
  • Do not reveal the One Time Password (OTP) generated by your security token to anyone.
  • Inform Great Eastern immediately on the loss of your mobile phone or change in your mobile phone number.
  • Great Eastern staff will not request customers to disclose their user ID and password under any circumstances. 

De-activate the function from storing or retaining your user-id/password on browsers by using the following steps:

Internet Explorer

Launch your Internet Explorer browser and click on "Tools" >> "Internet Options" >> "Content".

Under "Personal Information", click on "AutoComplete". Uncheck "User names and passwords on forms" and click on "Clear Passwords".

Click on "OK" to save your changes

2.     Protect your PC from viruses and malicious programs

  • Malicious program (or malware) is usually sent as an attachment or URL link (when clicked, will redirect to websites embedded with malicious contents) in emails claiming to be from someone you know, or disguised as genuine software coming from an official site. When installed, malware can steal your personal and financial information, send spam emails on your behalf or perform fraudulent activities under your name.
  • Equip your PC with the latest anti-virus,anti-spyware and firewall software to protect yourself against any virus attacks and other malicious attacks, particularly when you are using broadband connections, digital subscriber lines or cable modems.
  • Update the anti-virus and firewall products with newer versions on a regular basis.
  • Use personal firewall software to hide your computer from Internet outlaws.
  • Do not click on website links or attachments in emails received from unknown senders.
  • Do not run or download any programs received from suspicious emails.
  • Protect your computer from malicious programs by using anti-virus software.
  • Install the latest updates on your operating system and applications such as Microsoft Windows / Office, Adobe Reader, Flash, etc.
  • Signs of malware infection may include sudden slowness in your computer, change from the usual logon procedures or an increase in pop-up banners. If you suspect that your computer has been infected by malware, refrain from using Great Eastern websites until your computer is cleaned. 

3. Beware of and Protect your PC from Spyware.

  • Spyware is a software program installed in your computer that secretly gathers information about you on the Internet without your knowledge. It is sometimes bundled with shareware or freeware programs that are downloaded from the Internet.
  • Spyware has the ability to maliciously gain access to your passwords and other sensitive information. They also have the ability to monitor keystrokes, scan files on your hard drive and relay the information to unauthorized third parties leading to system instability or a crash.
  • Use anti-spyware software to find and remove hidden programs.
  • Use personal firewall software to hide your computer from Internet outlaws.
  • Be careful of any third-party software that claims to speed up your internet connection. This type of software can be packaged to look like a professional software or service, but when installed, it may redirect your Internet session through their own server, allowing fraudsters to see your online activities and potentially gain access to your personal information.
  • Be alert on any Spyware-like activities on your computer such as lots of pop-up banners or unsolicited email that claims to know you.
  • You can usually safely uninstall such software by going to your Control Panel, selecting Add/Remove Programs, find the application and select Remove. Some spyware software may make it difficult for you to uninstall, in such cases you may need to seek professional help to get it removed thoroughly.

4. Avoiding Hoax Emails (Phishing emails)

  • Phishing are fraud emails sent by fraudsters which trick you into providing your personal information, or downloading a virus that can steal your information.
  • Be wary of any email you receive from people you don't know or trust. Delete any emails you think are suspicious, such as spam, chain or junk mail. Delete the email from your 'Inbox

    If you receive an email or anything that is suspected to be fraudulent activity connected with GE, please do not respond to it. For example, you may receive an email that claims to be from GE asking you to click on a link to a website within the email to update sensitive information for certain reasons. When you click on the link, you will be directed to a bogus web site that may look exactly like ours where you will be asked to enter sensitive information. Emails like these may look quite sophisticated and even carry our logos. However, do not trust them.

    When in doubt or suspicious about the authenticity of the request, do not provide personal or financial information, always double-check with Great Eastern. Contact us via our official channels: www.greateasternlife.com. Never rely on any information or link from the fraudulent email.
  • Never click onto a link in an email to go to the GE login page. Always access GE by typing the full website address www.greateasternlife.com into your browser.
  • You also may wish to contact your Internet Service Provider for support in blocking e-mails or to subscribe to a spam filter they may offer.
  • Never send sensitive information by email.
  • Don't answer any unexpected email requesting personal information.

5. Internet Security

  • Make regular backup of critical data.
  • Never download files from PCs or sites which you aren't sure about its safety.
  • Do not install software or run programs of unknown origin.
  • Be careful of anyone who attempts to illegally obtain sensitive information from you by pretending to represent Great Eastern.
  • Remove file and printer sharing in your PCs, especially when they have internet access via cable modems, broadband connections or similar set-ups.
  • Never blindly type commands that others tell you to type, or go to web addresses mentioned by strangers, or run pre-fabricated programs or scripts
  • Log out the online session and turn off the computer when not in use, even if it is for a short while. This will prevent any transactions from being performed without your authorisation.

Do business only with Internet companies that use a secure form to capture private information. To verify your session is secure, look for "https" instead of "http" in the URL address line. You can also check that your information is encrypted by ensuring that a symbol of a locked padlock appears at the bottom of your browser.

  • Check your transaction history regularly to ensure that all details are updated and there are no unauthorized transactions.
  • Customers are also encouraged to use the latest versions of Internet browsers available, which may provide advanced security features such as anti-phishing and forged website identification. If such features are available, customers are advised to turn them on. It is also prudent to install the latest released anti-virus signatures and operating system/internet browser security updates.

6. Protect yourself from Smishing (SMS Phishing)

  • Smishing or SMS Phishing is a phishing scam used in mobile devices. Fraudsters send you text messages that contain different methods of capturing your personal banking information by pretending to be representatives of legitimate organisations.
  • You receive unsolicited text messages (SMS) from representatives claiming to be from organisations such as your Bank, Insurance company or Internet Service Provider. When you call or reply back, they ask questions that lead you to reveal personal banking information, which they will use for fraudulent activities.
  • Safeguard your personal information. Do not provide your personal data, such as your NRIC, to commercial enterprises such as retailers, unless absolutely necessary.
  • Never reply to SMSes, calls or emails on transactions that you did not perform. Do not reply to a text message that asks for your confidential information either.
  • Never click on any website links found in unsolicited SMS or multi-media messages (MMS) from unknown sources. Do not reply to such SMSes and delete them immediately.

7. Vishing (Voice Phishing)

  • Vishing (also known as Voice Phishing) is a form of phishing, where the attacker uses a phone call to lure you into giving your personal or policy information. The phone call can either be live or automated.
  • You receive a suspicious call or voice mail claiming that your policy account will be cancelled if you do not call their hotline and enter your personal information.
  • When in doubt, do not provide any personal or financial information.
  • Validate that the calls you receive about Great Eastern policy account are from trustworthy sources by contacting our customer service hotline.

8. Mobile Security

  • Download the Great Eastern mobile application only from Apple app store, or Great Eastern hosted sites. Downloading from websites other than these could lead to using a mobile application that is not legitimate.
  • Do not hack or modify (e.g. jailbreak or 'rooted') your mobile device. Doing so can make your mobile device more prone to viruses and malicious software.

9. Customer service for contingency matters
If you suspect that security breaches may have occurred and online transaction(s) might have been fraudulently accessed please do not hesitate to call our Hotline help: 1800 - 248 2888 or E-mail us at : wecare-sg@greateasternlife.com.

If you contact us via phone, our customer service officer will be able to advise you on the immediate action available. If necessary, your login access may be suspended to protect your interest. Our customer service officer may also obtain the necessary details from you regarding the matter to facilitate investigations.

If you notify us via email, please include your

  • name and user ID
  • date and time of access
  • description of error and
  • description of error and description of security breach or fraud

Once we are notified of any dispute, we will commence investigations immediately and revert to you as soon as possible, depending on the complexity of the dispute.

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Whistleblowing Programme

At Great Eastern Group, we are committed to a high standard of compliance with accounting, financial reporting, internal controls, corporate governance and auditing requirements and any legislation relating thereto. We aim to provide an avenue for individuals to raise genuine concerns about possible improprieties in matters of financial reporting and other malpractices without fear of suffering retribution. All concerns raised will be held in strictest confidence and handled fairly and properly.

You may report your concerns via email to whistleblow@greateasternlife.com

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Great Eastern Holdings Ltd | Great Eastern Life Assurance Co Ltd | Great Eastern General Insurance Ltd
Great Eastern Holdings Ltd | Great Eastern Life Assurance Co Ltd | Great Eastern General Insurance Ltd