Card 'ID Theft' Fraud Doubles in 2022

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Fraud committed when scammers open new card accounts or hijack existing ones doubled in 2022 to reach almost £52m ($65m), according to new figures from UK Finance.

The UK banking body said in its Annual Fraud Report 2023 that overall, on- and offline fraud losses fell 8% year-on-year (YoY) to £1.2bn ($1.5bn), with the finance industry saving as much again in unauthorized fraud.

The vast majority (78%) of these cases are now online, although those that are committed via ‘telecommunications’ account for a greater share of losses (44% versus 36%). Email accounted for 2% of fraud cases last year but 12% of losses.

Read more on fraud: Government’s New Fraud Strategy Gets Lukewarm Reception.

When it comes to unauthorized fraud, two categories stood out as on the rise.

Fraud on lost and stolen cards increased by 30% YoY to £100m ($125m) and ‘card ID theft,’ when criminals open a new account or take over an existing one, almost doubled to £52m.

“The standout area of increase according to today’s figures seems to be card ID theft which has increased by 105% in terms of numbers of cases, and 97% by value, with the largest increase being circumstances in which a genuine card account is taken over by a fraudster,” explained Mary Young, civil fraud partner at law firm Kingsley Napley.

“This means that genuine information about card numbers, expiry dates and also postcodes and addresses have been compromised. This may be as a result of phishing, scam text messages or good old fashioned mail theft, which reminds us that the need for vigilance applies in all aspects of life, both on- and offline.”

Elsewhere, authorized push payment (APP) fraud continued to cause misery for victims in 2022. This includes scams like romance fraud, business email compromise (BEC) and investment fraud, where the victim is tricked into voluntarily sending money to a fraudster – usually masquerading as a legitimate entity.

Some 78% of APP fraud cases started online last year and 18% via the phone. Overall, APP fraud losses stood at £485m ($607m), down 17% YoY, with impersonation scams accounting for the largest sum (£178m) and purchase scams accounting for the largest number of cases (57%).

However, the number of APP fraud cases – which banks are more reluctant to reimburse customers for – increased 6% in the period.

Editorial image credit: Nick Beer /

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