Consumers have been warned to beware of rising levels of internet scams that could result in credit card debt being built up without their knowledge.
Cifas, the UK’s fraud prevention service, has recorded a 207 per cent rise in the amount of facility takeover frauds, in which criminals gain access to people’s accounts.
“Although the internet has revolutionised our lives, it has also provided new avenues for fraudsters to exploit,” remarked communications manager Richard Hurley.
Common types of online scams include phishing – in which a bogus email pretending to be from a trusted source requests bank details – and fake lotteries where a person is told to send money for tax reasons and to claim winnings.
Mr Hurley noted that the web has made it easier for people to drop their guard, adding: “Online, natural prudence can easily be forgotten.”
Credit card fraud can create a high cost to society, as its proceeds can be used to fund serious organised crime, according to Card Watch.
By Jamie Price