Online banking fraud increases 48% year-on-year

Figures published last Friday by Financial Fraud Action UK (FFA UK) show that losses from online banking fraud in the UK increased 48% from 2013 to 2014, reaching a total cost of £60.4 million. The number of confirmed online banking fraud incidents in 2014 was 53,192.

According to ONS figures, 53% of UK adults – 26.9 million people – now use online banking, so the losses were “relatively modest”, as were losses from e-commerce fraud, which increased 14% to £217.4 million in 2014. “In 2014,” FFA UK explains, “e-commerce spending in the UK was £148 billion, meaning that for every £100 spent, only 9.2p was fraudulent.”

According to FFA UK:

“A key driver behind increasing levels of fraud continues to be fraudsters tricking customers into revealing personal and financial information, normally over the telephone. This typically involves the criminal pretending to be calling from a bank, police or another trusted organisation and claiming there has been fraud on the customer’s account. The caller will then persuade the victim to hand over their card and PIN number for example, or to transfer money to a so-called ‘safe account’ which is actually under the control of the fraudster. Intelligence suggests that businesses have become a growing target for criminals, which is reflected in a higher average loss per case during 2014.”

FFA UK also warns that criminals “use malware and viruses to steal information from infected computers. They then use stolen passwords and other personal details to commit fraud on bank accounts. FFA UK continues to advise members of the public and businesses to regularly update their computer security software and to be careful not to open suspicious links or emails.”

FFA UK has issued a Joint Declaration of UK Banks, Card Issuers and Building Societies, offering advice to all UK Bank Customers:


Phishing awareness

FFA UK advises banking customers to be aware of “increasing numbers of scams which aim to trick people into disclosing financial details or transferring their money directly to fraudsters.”

Phishing attacks, in which unsuspecting users are tricked into downloading malware or handing over personal and business information, are becoming increasingly common. They usually take the form of email links to malicious websites masquerading as legitimate ones.

Every day, 156 million phishing emails are sent, 15.6 million make it through spam filters, 8 million are opened, 800,000 recipients click on the links, and 80,000 of them unwittingly hand over their information to criminals.

IT Governance’s Cyber Security and Phishing Staff Awareness Course will enable you and your team to understand how cyber criminals operate, how they plan and execute their phishing campaigns, and how to spot and avoid phishing tactics.

Our Employee Phishing Vulnerability Assessment will identify potential vulnerabilities among your employees and provide recommendations to improve your security, giving you a broad understanding of how you are at risk and what you need to do to address these risks.