Over £1.2 billion was stolen by criminals through fraud last year, equivalent to more than £2,300 every minute of every day.


According to UK Finance’s latest Annual Fraud Report, unauthorised fraud losses across payment cards, remote banking and cheques reach just under £726.9m in 2022. Unauthorised fraud occurs when money is taken from your account via transactions you didn’t make or approve. The biggest category of unauthorised fraud losses, at £395.7m, was remote purchase fraud, where a criminal uses stolen card details to make purchases online, over the phone or via mail order.

A large proportion of scams, however, involve approved authorised payment (APP) fraud, where fraudsters trick victims into transferring funds across to them. The majority of reported cases relate to purchase fraud, whereby people are tricked into paying for goods and services that don’t actually exist. According to UK Finance, authorised push payment (APP) fraud losses reached £485.2m in 2022, although this was down 17% compared to in 2021.

Myron Jobson, senior personal finance analyst at interactive investor, said: “A closer look at the data reveals that while authorised push payment fraud decreased in value last year, there was a 5% increase in number of people who fell victim to this type of fraud - with crooks making use of popular online platforms to scam their victims. It difficult to use the internet without encountering something that looks like a scam – not to mention those that appear legitimate that fly under the radar, which makes surfing the web a minefield.

Whilst victims of unauthorised fraud, such as bank card theft, are entitled by law to get their money back from their banks within 48 hours, those affected by authorised fraud aren’t offered the same protections and so often lose their money for good. It’s therefore vital to protect yourself and be extra vigilant when it comes to keeping your card and banking details safe.

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Brearn Horne, personal finance expert at NerdWallet said: “Don’t let your card out of sight when making a payment to avoid it being copied or tampered with and never share your PIN with others, especially if someone contacts you out of the blue. Remember your bank will never ask for your PIN.

“Report any suspicious payments to your payment provider as soon as possible, no matter how small the transaction is. The sooner you report a suspected fraudulent payment, the quicker your bank or provider can investigate the situation and prevent more money from being stolen.”

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Earlier this month, the government unveiled its fraud strategy which aims to cut fraud by 10% by the end of 2024.

Suella Braverman, the secretary of state for the Home department said: “The strategy to tackle fraud has three elements. First, government and law enforcement will pursue more fraudsters and bring them to justice. Second, government and industry will work together to stop fraud attempts. And third, the British people will be more empowered to recognise, avoid, and report fraud when they encounter it, and better supported when they do fall victim to it.”

Changes will include the setting up of a ‘National Fraud Squad’ with 400 new investigators, and the creation of a replacement of Action Fraud, to make it easier for victims to report fraud and for law enforcement to use and share information.


If you think you’ve fallen victim to a scam, let your bank immediately and report it to Action Fraud online at actionfraud.police.uk or by calling 0300 123 2040, or call Police Scotland on 101.