Online fraud on the rise

CIFAS has revealed that 83% of frauds recorded in 2012 so far were attempted or carried out online.

Over the same period in 2011 this figure was 71%. Most other methods of fraud have seen a decrease.

Plastic card accounts and mail order goods suppliers are the preferred targets for fraudsters.

CIFAS describe the rise in online fraud is alarming but not surprising.

Communications Manager, CIFAS, Richard Hurley said: “The fact that the internet has revolutionised our society and the ways in which individuals and businesses conduct themselves is hardly news.

“The convenience and speed that it can offer — when compared with previous business models or ways of conducting transactions — is one of the internet’s prime benefits.

“It is easy to forget, however, that the convenience it offers genuine customers is also provided to those less scrupulous.”

He explained that fraudsters mimic consumer behaviour, so as consumers make more use of the internet so will the fraudsters.

CIFAS suggest that by changing their own practices and behaviour consumers and businesses can avoid falling victim to fraud.

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