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Fraud: The UK’s Billion Pound Problem

The cost of fraud to Britain rose above £1billion for the first time in five years in 2016, driven in part by a huge surge in cyber crime.

The total value of fraud in Britain soared 55% to £1.14 billion last year, despite the number of cases dropping by nearly a third from 310 to 220, KPMG’s Fraud Barometer showed.

KPMG – which measured cases in UK courts with losses of £100,000 or more – said this was due to a rise in “super cases” worth more than £50million, while the value of the average fraud case doubled to £5.2million from £2.4million.

The barometer also highlighted a 1,266% jump in cyber fraud which reached £124 million in 2016.

How To Stay Safe From Fraud

Get Safe Online has produced the following tips to staying safe:

  • Review your passwords to make sure they are strong and not use the same ones for more than one account
  • Check social media privacy settings
  • Update operating systems and software programs or apps if prompted,
  • Back up information using the cloud and check that internet security software and apps are up to date and switched on.

Experian has these 10 tips to keeping yourself safe from fraudsters away from the internet as well as while online:

  1. Always shred or destroy documents that contain personal information before throwing them away.
  2. Never respond to cold phone calls or emails asking for account details, PINs, passwords or personal information.
  3. Don’t give too much away on networking websites. For example, pet or children’s names could be used as passwords.
  4. Register to vote at your current address. If you do not, thieves could use your previous address details to open new credit accounts – and run up debts in your name.
  5. Monitor your post regularly so you know when to expect important documents – and when to act if they do not arrive.
  6. Redirect your mail if you move house.
  7. Always use secure, unique passwords for as many online accounts as possible, and ideally all of them. At the very least have a unique password for each type of service provider such as financial services, retail services and email.
  8. Don’t store account names and passwords on your smartphone, either in email, as a note, or to “autocomplete” when you open a website or app. This information could be used by a fraudster if your device is lost or stolen.
  9. Read all bank and card statements regularly to check for suspicious transactions.
  10. Your credit report will list your credit accounts and what you owe, so you can spot applications and spending that are nothing to do with you.

Don’t Forget
Complete the new 2016/17 Cyber Crime survey, so we can see the full scope of Cyber Crime in Warwickshire, and across West Mercia, the West Midlands and Staffordshire – https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/RegionalCyber16

For more information about our work, please visit www.safeinwarwickshire.com/cybercrime

Cyber Aware is a cross-government campaign, funded by the National Cyber Security Programme. They aim to measurably and significantly improve the online safety behaviour and confidence of consumers and small businesses (SMEs).

Get Safe Online is the UK’s leading source of factual and easy-to-understand information on online safety. Their website offers advice on how you can protect yourself, your computers and devices, and your business against the likes of fraud, identity theft, viruses and other potential online problems.

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