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Financial scams soar to an all-time high


Take Five encourages people to pause and think before responding to any financial requests which may arrive by email

The group is launching a new initiative to educate people about financial fraud such as email and phone scams and phishing attempts.

Rob Norris, director Enterprise Cyber Security EMEIA at Fujitsu commented in an email to SCMagazineUK.com, “It’s sad but unsurprising that payments fraud has grown significantly in the a year ago”.

In response, FFA, along with major banks and financial services providers, has launched a campaign called Take Five which encourages people to think before handing over personal details.

“Everyone needs to be vigilant and safeguard their information – if you get any calls, texts or emails out of the blue asking for your personal or financial details always take a moment to stop and think”.

Financial Fraud Action UK figures include payment card, remote banking and good old fashioned cheque fraud losses.

You can find out more about the campaign by visiting the Take Five website.

For cases involving transfers of money, the banks often refuse to refund customers on the basis that they made the payment voluntarily.

Scammers also pretend to be bank staff and police officers to persuade consumers to send money to their bank accounts. Sometimes fraudsters even send couriers to a victim’s home to collect bank cards.

She told the Press Association people should not feel under pressure and “react by doing something you wouldn’t normally do if you were to stop and think about it”.

Fraud and cyber crime account for almost half of all offences, according to the British Crime Survey.

Research by Financial Fraud Action UK reveals nearly three-quarters of people claim they are aware of the methods fraudsters use.

“Last year, banks stopped £7 in £10 of attempted fraud from happening”.

Of those who shared details, 43% said they did so because they felt the caller seemed genuine, while 39% said they felt pressured. Others were busy and wanted to get people off the phone quickly.

A separate survey commissioned by a comparison website suggested that more than four in 10 people have needed to cancel credit or debit cards after falling victim to fraud in the past year.

Remarkably, more than a third (37%) thought they were being defrauded during the conversation but still continued with the transaction, the research claimed.

Home Office Security Minister Ben Wallace has backed the Take Five campaign and said the impact of financial fraud can be “devastating on victims, with fraudsters using increasingly cunning and convincing tactics”.

Worryingly, more than a third (37%) of victims could tell they were being scammed during the conversation but still carried on and almost a quarter (23%) realised after a conversation ended.