Online fraud has increased over the last few years, as the popularity of handling money online has grown. A recent report from the UK revealed that there had been a 48% rise in losses from online banking fraud in 2014, compared to 2013. According to the organization that produced the report, Financial Fraud Action, the losses amounted to £60 million. Credit and debit card losses from fraud added up to £479 million, which is a 6% increase from the previous year. The growing problem is being blamed on an increase in malware and con-artists using online methods. Consumers are often duped into providing fraudsters with their personal details.
Financial Fraud Action says that the total loss from banking fraud is “relatively modest”. The increase in fraud is not that significant considering the proportion of people who use online banking. But consumers aren’t the only people being targeted, as businesses also fall victim to the same problem. Victims of fraud usually receive a refund if their card details are stolen. But it is possible for their bank to prove that they have been negligent and refuse to refund them. Fraud from the use of UK cards abroad also rose. Fraudsters can manage to bypass some security features when they’re out of the country. The increase from 2013 was 23%.
Some campaigners say that banks need to provide more options for people who would rather bank offline. But for both banking and card fraud, better education and security features would help many people. Many banks and card providers have strong systems in place. It’s also important that businesses use the sort of service provided by IDology to combat fraud. These services can help protect themselves and their customers. But consumers also need to be aware of the tricks that criminals use to try and get hold of their details. Fraud has been around for a long time, whether it takes place in person, over the phone or via an email or website. Consumers should also play their part and be aware of the risks involved in online banking and shopping.
Financial Fraud Action wants a campaign across the UK. They want to help raise awareness of the kind of crimes people fall victim to online and over the phone. They also stress the importance of customers keeping their anti-virus software updated and even point out that some banks offer it for free. On the business end, companies can help their customers by making it clear when and how they will contact them. Many people fall victim to phone calls or emails they believe to be from someone they trust. For example, a company can tell their customers that they never ask for personal details by email. Or they could point out that they always ask for a security question over the phone before requesting any sensitive information.
It’s everyone’s responsibility to tackle online fraud, from businesses and banks to consumers and the police. It’s essential for everyone to be vigilant and be aware of the risks and the precautions they can take.