The UK’s leading fraud prevention service, CIFAS, released its annual Fraudscape report this week detailing trends from over 325,000 fraud cases recorded in the UK in 2016. The data, from 387 organisations, including many major brands, is a comprehensive picture of fraud in the country.

Key findings from the Cifas’ annual report Fraudscape include:

  • Over 325,000 (325,092) internal and external fraud cases were recorded in total, up from 321,092 (1% increase) in the previous year
  • Organisations successfully prevented £1.03 billion in fraud losses through non-competitive data sharing
  • Identity crimes (identity fraud and facility takeover) remain the biggest threat, representing 60% of all fraud recorded
  • Facility takeovers increased by 45% from 15,497 to 22,525
  • Over 50% of the facility takeovers recorded were enabled over the phone, typically to call centre staff

88% of identity frauds were committed online, compared to 30% of facility takeovers occurring online.

CIFAS also reveals that the number of frauds reported to the National Fraud Database by credit granting online retailers increased by 52% in 2016 compared with 2015.

This increase is primarily attributed to the growth in the number of cases of misuse of facility fraud.

The report says these are cases where an individual has opened an account and spends money against it without ever intending to repay the money owed.

There were 28,608 such cases reported to the National Fraud Database in 2016.

CIFAS comments that fraudsters often seem to think this behaviour will not be detected by other lenders.