Card fraud levels ‘lowest in a decade’

According to the banking industry, card fraud losses were at their lowest level for 10 years for the first half of 2010, at just £187m.

The UK Cards Association said that online banking fraud was down 36% compared to the same period last year, at £25m.

And despite telephone banking fraud being up 9% to £6m, cheque fraud losses fell by 13% to £14m.

These half-year figures follow the 2009 figures which saw a 28% drop in reported credit card fraud, which marked the most significant annual fall since statistics first started being published in 1999.

Melanie Johnson of the UK Cards Association said: “These figures are testament to the importance that the UK’s card companies place on driving down card fraud losses and reducing any inconvenience to customers”.

The huge rise in card use, together with the growth of telephone and internet banking over the past 10 years have given fraudsters more and more opportunity to work.

Between 1999 and 2009, the UK banking industry and retailers lost a reported £4.7bn to card fraud, which includes debit cards, credit cards and store cards.

But you will be pleased to learn that security measures promoted by the industry have been having some effect.

Chip-and-pin technology is now being used both in the UK and abroad and banks are heightening online verification security by adding software that requests secret passwords when using plastic cards to shop online.

The UK Cards Association also added that card fraud abroad has halved in the past two years.

“One of the factors causing this is the fraud detection systems used by the banks and card companies, which monitor for unusual spending – meaning that potential fraud is stopped before it happens,” it said.

“The increasing rollout of chip-and-pin in more and more countries around the world also makes it harder for criminals to commit counterfeit card fraud.”

There are several ways in which card fraud can take place, such as card details being stolen and used to pay for things by phone, online and by mail order, or the use of fake cards, all of which continue to thrive, produceing significant losses to banks and retailers.

Card losses peaked in 2008 at £610m, but have since been falling.

However, the number of reported phishing attacks, where victims are sent fraudulent emails that appear to be a trusted bank or company, in an attempt to trick them into revealing their bank account details, are on the rise, with over 31,000 reported cases in the first half of 2010 alone.

Cheque fraud has been falling, but this is hardly surprising as the use of cheques is rapidly falling.

“The overwhelming majority of attempted cheque fraud gets stopped before the cheque is paid,” the UK Cards Association said.

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Why it Will Not Pay to Commit Fraud

Fraud is a massive problem, not only in the UK and USA but in most of the leading countries also. The fight against fraud needs to be stepped up, but the trend is to reduce public expenditure these days. This not only impacts agencies such as the police but also the fraudsters themselves will be feeling the pinch!

The question is – will this result in an even greater increase in the number of frauds taking place? If there are less police officers in the regional fraud squads and the Serious and Organised Crime Agency is being disbanded, does this not mean that the fraudster will have less to fear when committing his or her crime. Other agencies are reducing their spending on the fight against fraud. Take the Department for Business Innovation and Skills for example, who are substantially reducing the sums spent investigating companies – meaning that any company set up with the intention of defrauding its customers will be more likely to prosper.

The trouble is that when frauds come to trial they run up huge Legal Aid costs for the fraudster. All their legal costs, which in a complex fraud can amount to £100,000s, even several £millions;, when all the costs of the legal team are considered. It seems that along with the funding for the regulators, Legal aid is set to be significantly cut also.

On the face of it this seems to be fair. The authorities cannot afford to investigate or prosecute as many frauds – but if you do get caught you will not be allowed a comprehensive defence using the best legal and fraud experts available. Quid pro quo? A better opportunity but with a bigger risk.

The differing ways in which the funds might be allocated is likely to be where the problem lies. All fraudsters will be faced with difficulties in obtaining quality represenetation, but the fraud regulatory agencies will be able to choose where they spend their own scant resources in an attempt to get the most for their money. This has always been their way, where previously criticisms have been that resources are always spent on serious crime such as murder, rape and dealing drugs. Frauds were often considered too much work for only a single conviction – one police officer could typically spend a year or more investigating a relatively minor fraud, whereas the same resource could result in successful prosecutions for 100s of burglaries or one or more “serious” crimes.

The danger is that the police will investigate the easier frauds, where quick results are possible, leaving the complex frauds alone. This means that businessmen practicing only sharp practice might be targeted – or failed businesses accused of fraudulent trading. With little chance of a high quality defence it is possible that these will become victims of the cut backs and that the clever fraudsters will escape sanction.

Mark Jenner is a forensic accountant and fraud investigation specialist. His web site offers informative articles on fraud investigation fraud prevention and asset recovery together with advice on preventing money laundering. He regularly gives expert accounting evidence as a witness for the fraud regulators.

Mass Marketing Fraud

Mass advertising frauds are often regarded as white-collar crimes relating to the usage of news for mass-communication for instance the internet, mailing, and telemarketing. These crimes frequently utilize deceitful strategies to con money from consumers and it is predicted that scores of People in the us fall for mass-marketing schemes each year, leading to the increasing loss of millions of hard-earned bucks.

Mass Marketing Fraud is regarded as a white-collar crime since it usually involves minimal violence toward the sufferer. As an alternative, these types of schemes are executed using the self-confidence associated with the target that an excellent or solution is supposed to be delivered. This kind of fraudulence depends heavily in the trust regarding the prey together with trade of money before everything of price is delivered. Regrettably, many sufferers of mass advertising and marketing frauds never ever retrieve the funds that has been taken from their store.

Forms of Mass Marketing Fraud

Advance cost schemes will be the most common kinds of size advertising fraud. Advance charge schemes often include sufferers who are urged to distribute payments for goods or solutions up-front and wait for delivery. This kind of scheme usually will come in numerous variants and frequently relies upon severe confidence on the part of the prey. According to the F.B.I., some commonly recognized samples of advance fee systems are:

• Nigerian Letter Fraud – sufferers are told of huge amounts of cash in international records that need to be utilized in the U.S. The target is generally told that he / she will simply want to act as an “agent” of transfer the resources in question and can obtain a “fee” for simply acquiring the production of said resources. The target is normally supplied a counterfeit check to cover the guaranteed charges, as soon as they return real funds towards the con musician, they frequently find themselves accountable for cashing a counterfeit check.

• Overpayment Scams – Common overpayment cons include eBay, Craigslist, also internet sites that folks use to sell goods. Victims tend to be called by an interested “buyer” whom offers additional money compared to the marketed price of the item. The seller is usually delivered a counterfeit check and is expected to go back the rest of the stability (minus some “bonus costs”) toward buyer. Owner generally discovers that he / she is provided a counterfeit instrument just after delivering money back towards the fraudulent party.

• Sweepstakes Fraud – this kind of fraudulence performs upon person’s belief that they have claimed an award, sweepstakes, or lottery of some type. They are usually informed that they’re a sweepstakes winner and must pay up-front costs to get their prize or profits. When the sufferer has actually delivered remittance, they often discover there was no competition anyway.

For more information on size marketing fraud or white collar crimes, go to the website of Austin criminal defense lawyer Ian Inglis.

Joseph Devine

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While there are wrinkle ointment organizations that don’t offer quality services and products nor offer refunds it’s barely a reason to take it out on other businesses.  And even though we understand that there are a few frauds available where ındividuals are being cheated, it hardly makes scamming honorable organizations appropriate.  It generates organizations matter whether to supply these guarantees to consumers and everyone else will totally lose.  These reimbursement fraudsters are having a significant impact on a lot of companies in these already troubled economic times. 

From a company perspective, you simply can’t manage to leave a revenue leak of the proportion available.  It has been identified and its particular solution is effortless, simply stop supplying it.  But then most people customers who purchase products in hopes it works and then we can continue to use all of them lack the comfort of once you understand we can get a refund if we have a reaction into the services and products.  The behavior of a few customers who will be blatantly exploiting these wrinkle ointment companies is having significant impacts on these business and eventually it’s going to start getting the same impact on most people.  As consumers we have to reconsider our behavior before we start purchasing things that we could both perhaps not pay for, or that individuals plan to return.  If this could be taking place to us, we would feel much in a different way about it.  If you are planning purchasing a wrinkle cream or any anti aging item, do so aided by the objective of keeping it.  When you yourself have a reaction to it, then please return it, but don’t just buy it intending on scamming the company, it hurts people.

Mark Robbins is a consumer advocate whom contributes reviews and product warnings to benefit the customer. He explores one other region of the equation here, but he mostly is a defender of product consumers’ passions. Their main tasks are seen on blogs where he ratings the best wrinkle lotion products which consumers can purchase.

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