UK, 25, November, 2022: Identity fraud has risen by more than a fifth in 2022, amid warnings that fraudulent activity is set to peak this Christmas shopping season.
New analysis from Experian reveals that identity fraud rose by 21% in the last 12 months, with the trend predicted to be at its most severe over the festive period.
Since 2018 identity fraud rates have been seen to rise by up to 15% year-on-year during November and December, as fraudsters attempt to take advantage of the increase in online transactions, reducing businesses resources to investigate potential fraud, and access credit with stolen personal details.
Meanwhile, the extent of the issue can be seen in the potential financial cost fraud poses to businesses. Experian’s identity and fraud technology prevented more than £1.8bn of fraudulent transactions in 2021.
Eduardo Castro, Managing Director, Identity and Fraud, Experian UK&I, said: “Fraud is a serious, ongoing problem for both consumers and businesses in the UK. Over 2022, there has been no let-up and it’s likely, as our figures show, the trend will only become more pronounced over the coming months.”
“With an increase in the volume of online transactions, it’s vital businesses can confirm their customers’ information is legitimate and they are not being duped by a fraudster using stolen personal information.”
To encourage people to look after their personal information and for businesses to think about their fraud risk, Experian has launched a new social media awareness campaign. Featuring Father Christmas and an excited, but somewhat suspicious child, the festive-inspired video aims to make everyone aware about the dangers of identity fraud.
Castro adds: “There are several simple things people can do to keep their information secure. Making sure they don’t overshare personal details on social media or enabling multi-factor authentication, such as biometrics, for their online accounts can go a long way to preventing ID fraud.
“Always be suspicious of unsolicited calls, emails, and texts. If in doubt, contact the company directly - it only takes a minute to offer up the personal information which the fraudster can then use to access your accounts or apply for credit in your name.”
Figures from UK Finance reveal losses related to card identity theft increased by 86% in the first six months of 2022, up from £11.5 million to £21.4 million, compared to the same period last year.*
Authorised Push Payment (APP) fraud, where a victim is tricked – typically through a phone call, text message, or email – into transferring money to a fraudster, cost consumers £249.1 million. Romance scams, which sees the victim transfer money to an apparent love interest rose by almost a third (31%) to more than £16 million.
Overall, more than £609 million was stolen, but there are signs of encouragement, with advanced anti-fraud prevention systems deployed by banks preventing £584 million from being lost.
“Many businesses are meeting the challenge of fraud head-on,” Castro adds.
“New, cutting-edge technologies incorporating machine learning are bolstering efforts, while regulations like the Payments Service Directive 2 (PDS2) are also having a positive impact.
“Despite the overall amount of fraud losses falling slightly, levels are still extremely high and costing victims significantly. The issue is that fraudsters are always looking to find a new way to exploit any opportunity. At this time of year, we expect there to be a surge in delivery scams for example - it’s an ongoing battle which both businesses and consumers need to be aware of.”
Experian is a market leader in fraud prevention technology and has recently been named as the leading global provider of online payment fraud solutions by Juniper Research.
Earlier this year, it launched Experian Fraud Score, the next generation in fraud prevention services allowing organisations of all sizes to have access to an advanced fraud prevention system ‘out-of-the-box.’
Developed using the latest Machine Learning capabilities, front-line data analytics, and proprietary bureau and fraud outcome data, it deploys a probability scoring system from 1 to 1,000 – with a low score signifying a lower risk – to help businesses better understand the fraud risk of each new and existing customer interactions.
To view our Christmas fraud film, ‘The World’s Most Impersonated Man’, visit https://www.experian.co.uk/business/regulation-and-fraud/fraud-at-christmas
Analysis based on data from the National Hunter Fraud Prevention Service.
How to protect yourself protect yourself from identity fraud
Robert Goodman, PR Manager, Corporate & Business, UK&I, Experian
Tel: +44 7989 398 498 / Email: Robert.Goodman@Experian.com
Experian is the world’s leading global information services company. During life’s big moments – from buying a home or a car, to sending a child to college, to growing a business by connecting with new customers – we empower consumers and our clients to manage their data with confidence. We help individuals to take financial control and access financial services, businesses to make smarter decisions and thrive, lenders to lend more responsibly, and organisations to prevent identity fraud and crime.
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