Crime moves upmarket as fraud becomes UK’s number 1 offence
New research from Experian claims fraud is now the UK’s most common criminal offence, much to the dismay of thugs and hoodlums everywhere, reports Telecoms.com (Banking Technology‘s sister publication).
The company’s Annual Fraud Indicator 2017 estimates the annual cost of fraud in the UK is £190 billion, exceeding the total gross domestic product of 148 out of 191 countries on the planet. Splitting it down, private sector fraud costs the UK economy £140 billion over the course of 2017, while it is only £40.3 billion in the public sector.
“Awareness of the dangers fraud poses is growing, but the total of £190 billion is startlingly high,” says Nick Mothershaw, director of fraud and identity solutions at Experian. “Plastic card and online banking fraud continues to increase, so new regulations which make it harder for fraudsters to use someone’s cards online are a necessary step.
“Fraudsters are shamelessly opportunistic and are now turning their attention to the pensions release, lured by the promise of high value returns when their scams are successful.”
Procurement has been pinned down as the biggest sucker for fraud, but the report notes new technologies are opening up new opportunities for the tricksters. Online banking fraud has grown by 226% and telephone banking fraud by 178% in the past year, with millennials getting caught out as well.
While this number is surprisingly high, the growing popularity of mobile money and contactless payment solutions might add to the problem. Another area which we haven’t seen the impact of is social media.
With the online world taking more control of our daily lives, authentication techniques using social media accounts are becoming more common. The vast majority are used for free services, but that doesn’t mean someone won’t work out how to commit a white collar crime using this little development. Individuals seem very enthusiastic about handing out their personal information online, and in truth we haven’t seen any particularly devastating negative impacts yet. That doesn’t mean it isn’t possible though.