Despite the continuous efforts of banks and financial institutions to thwart the attempts of fraudsters, the rate of financial fraud is still increasing. Latest figures show criminals have stolen £753.9 million through fraud in the first half on this year, a 30% increase from 2020.
Unfortunately, fraudsters are coming up with new ways to target individuals, meaning we must remain alert and savvy to protect ourselves against such crimes.
What is Financial Fraud?
When it comes to financial fraud, there are to main types- authorised push payment scams (APP) and unauthorised scams. APP scams are when a criminal attempts to trick you into sending money from your account directly to theirs. An example would be when you get a call from your “bank” asking you to move money out of your account into a different one. Unauthorised scams are when criminals illegally obtain access to your finances without your knowledge. An example of this would be if a criminal where to hack your PayPal account and gain access to your bank details from there.
How to Stay Protected
To limit the chances of falling victim to financial fraud, there a numbers of steps and tips recommended to follow to stay protected. The Take Five to Stop Fraud campaign recommends 3 best practices to follow to remain safe, there are:
- Stop: Take a moment and think before parting with your money
- Challenge: Always challenge the situation and ask “could this be fake?” You are allowed to refuse or ignore any requests to provide details or move money. Remember, only criminals will rush and panic you into this.
- Protect: Contact your bank and Action Fraud immediately if you believe you are the victim of financial fraud
On top of this, Action Fraud recommend 5 best practices to keep yourself safe:
- Don’t give out any personal information before verifying the identity of the person asking
- Update your computer regularly with anti-virus software to limit the chances of any malware
- Check your bank statements regularly to spot any unauthorised transactions quickly
- Be aware of phishing emails. Remember, your bank will never send you an email requesting you move money or click any links to confirm details
- Shred and destroy any documents, letters and receipts with any identifiable information on it before throwing it away.
For more information on how to protect yourself against fraud, visit the Action Fraud website. You can also visit the Take Five website where you can take a quiz to find out how savvy you are against financial fraud.
Please note, the information contained in this article is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as individual advice. If you would like further guidance on the above topic, or to speak to one of our qualified advisers, please visit our website at www.damgoodpensions.com or contact us on email@example.com