Fraud on debit and credit cards may have fallen by more than a quarter last year, the first decrease since 2006, but online scams are on the up, according to the latest card and banking fraud figures.
The UK Cards Association said that losses associated with online fraud rose by 14 per cent last year to just shy of £60m. In contrast, card fraud overall fell by 28 per cent to £440m between 2008 and 2009, due in part to the success of chip and PIN and more sophisticated fraud-detection tools. Cheque fraud also saw a 29 per cent dip from £41.9m to £29.8m, but there is still much work to do to combat online fraud.
"We are committed to a wide range of measures to ensure customers feel confident, safe and secure when they use their credit and debit cards – whether in a shop, abroad, online, at a cash machine or anywhere else," says Melanie Johnson, chairman of the UK Cards Association.
The boost in online crime has been blamed on the use of more advanced malware, which targets vulnerabilities in online-banking customers' PCs, as well as on a rise in incidents of phishing (duping users into revealing passwords and other critical information) which rose to 51,000, up from just 1,700 five years ago. As a result, online banking losses have more than doubled from £23.2m in 2005 to £59.7m last year.