Fraud losses total £609m in H1, UK Finance reveals

Over £609.8m was stolen by criminals through fraud in the first half of 2022, new figures published by UK Finance have revealed.

The figure is down 13% compared to the same period in 2021, as the banking body suggested that the drop drop was partially due to last year being an exceptionally high period for fraud, rather than the start of a downward trend.

UK Finance’s latest report, which covers H1 2022, showed that of the total £609.8m stolen, unauthorised fraud loses amounted to £360.8m across payment cards, remote banking and cheques totalled £360.8m, a fall of 9% compared to the same period last year. Victims of unauthorised payment card fraud are legally protected against losses and industry analysis shows that customers are refunded in excess of  98% of all confirmed cases.

The remaining £249.1m in losses were due to authorised push payment (APP) fraud, where the customer is tricked into authorising a payment to an account controlled by a criminal. This was figure down by 17% on the same period last year.

Figures also showed the banking and finance industry prevented a further £583.9m of unauthorised fraud from getting into the hands of criminals.

However, UK Finance has still reiterated calls for “cross-sector action” to target the the criminals responsible for both authorised and unauthorised fraud, given that much of the fraud highlighted in the report was initiated from criminal activity taking place through online and technology platforms.

“As we have warned previously, the level of fraud in the UK is such that it must be considered a national security threat,” said managing director of economic crime at UK Finance, Katy Worobec. “The industry is continuously focused on tackling the threat as we know criminals continue to find new ways to exploit potential victims.

“However, criminal gangs simply bypass the advanced security measures banks have in place and instead directly target the customer, usually outside the confines of the banking system. This is why it is key that other sectors work with us to fight fraud as it remains a persistent threat to businesses, consumers and the growth of the economy not to mention the reputation of the UK as a place to do business.”

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