Warning to stay vigilant after £ 1.4million lost in Wiltshire due to fraud

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Wiltshire’s top cyber intelligence cop has issued a warning, after new figures revealed the dangers of fraud.

MoneyTransfers.com analyzed National Fraud Intelligence Bureau data on 44 police forces to determine which areas were most affected by check, plastic card, and online bank account fraud between April 2020 and March 2021.

They found that 25,717 cases of check, plastic card and online bank account fraud had been recorded by 44 police forces.

July 2020 (2,349 cases) was the worst month, followed by November 2020 (2,341). While in April 2020, the fewest cases were recorded with 1851.

In addition, out of the 25,717 cases, the collective financial loss suffered by the victims was an astronomical £ 161,221,800 – which equates to a financial loss of £ 6,269 per case.

Wiltshire Police were in 36th place, as they received 306 reported cases of check, plastic card and online bank account fraud between April 2020 and March 2021.

During this period, August 2020, October 2020 and January 2021 (31 cases each) were the worst months. While November 2020 saw the fewest cases at 20.

Of those targeted, the financial loss amounts to £ 1.4million; this equates to a personal loss of £ 4,575 for each individual case.

Wiltshire Police Prevention and Protection Officer Lee Stripe said this in response to the numbers.

“We are committed to ensuring that residents of Wiltshire are protected from cybercrime and we are working hard to educate people on the latest scams that we have information about,” he explained.

“It is important to protect your device when you use it to access online banking services.

“Keeping it up to date is essential because the latest updates contain security patches that protect you against the vulnerabilities detected.

“Criminals can get your details by tricking you into revealing them through unsolicited emails and messages.

“Your bank or real estate company will never send you an email or message asking for your login information or PIN. Always access online banking by going directly to the website, do not click on any links sent to you.

“Be careful when shopping online, beware of advertisements promoting products that are too good to be true or offers sent to you.

“Before submitting card details, make sure the web page displays the green padlock or the unbroken key symbol in your browser. This encrypts your connection so that it is secure.

“If you can, pay with a credit card because that gives you some protection if something goes wrong with purchases.

“Cybercrime is known to be underreported. Therefore, we urge you, if you have been the victim of online bank or credit card fraud, to report it to Action Fraud, online or by phone on 0300 123 2040. You should also contact your bank and cease all use from your account.

“Please be vigilant and share this information with relatives, friends or neighbors who may be vulnerable.”

In the same data, the Metropolitan Police recorded the highest number of cases of check, plastic card and online bank account fraud from April 2020 to March 2021, with a shocking number of 4,224 reports, the equivalent of 12 incidents per day in the capital. Of the 4,224 cases, the cumulative financial losses suffered by the victims amounted to a colossal amount of £ 32.3 million.

In second place is Greater Manchester Police with 1,332 cases of check, plastic card and online bank account fraud between April 2020 and March 2021. Victims who were victims of the crime in Greater Manchester suffered an overall monetary decline of £ 14.3million.

West Midlands Police (1265), Thames Valley Police (971), Kent Police (896) and West Yorkshire Police (873) are among other police forces who have recorded over 800 cases of fraud by check, plastic card and online bank account from April 2020. until March 2021, ranking third, fourth, fifth and sixth respectively.

At the other end of the spectrum, in 44th position, is the Cleveland Police Department, which has had just 124 cases of check, plastic card and online bank account fraud.

Slightly above Cleveland Police in 43rd row is Dyfed-Powys Police, with Welsh Police reporting 146 cases of check, plastic card and online bank account fraud. Despite a small number of incidents, the amassed financial loss that the 146 victims suffered was still £ 558,100,000.



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