27th March 2015
The increase in online banking has seen losses from fraud rise by almost half over the past year.
According to Financial Fraud Action, banking fraud losses rose by 48% to £60 million in 2014, compared with 2013, as scammer use computer malware – or malicious software – and con-artists scamming people out of personal details.
However, the organisation said the loss is ‘relatively modest’ considering that over half of UK adults bank online.
Card fraud accounts for a much larger amount, up 6% to £479 million over the same period. Credit card companies refund victims of fraud unless it is proved they were negligent.
The total amount of fraud is down 21% from the 2008 peak of £609.9 million thanks to a tightening of security in banks and card providers and scammers have moved to defrauding people over the phone, with calls intended to find out personal details.
Financial Fraud Action is calling for a nationwide campaign to raise awareness of ‘deception crimes’ and said those banking online should update their anti-virus software to reduce the risk of being scammed.
Detective chief inspector Perry Stokes, head of the dedicated card and payment crime unit, said: ‘Fraudsters can be very convincing and often target people over the phone. If you receive a phonecall out of the blue, never take for granted that the caller is who they say they are, even if they seem to know a lot about you.
‘If you’re asked for your card details, PIN numbers or to transfer money to another account from someone who has cold-called you, my advice is to hang up the phone immediately and report the incident to your bank.
‘It is also important that you don’t allow criminals access to your computer by neglecting basic precautious. To beat the fraudsters make sure that you have up-to-date anti-virus software to keep one step ahead.’