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A financial fraud happens every 15 seconds in the UK

Every 15 seconds, a financial scam happens in the UK - amounting to more than a million in the first half of this year. This information was released by Financial Fraud Action UK (FFA UK) today, as it launches a campaign to combat financial fraud. 

The campaign, named Take Five, wants to remind everyone to take five minutes of their time and think about if that email or SMS message they just received really was from their bank, or from someone pretending to be their bank. Email and SMS messages are a very powerful tool for scammers who use phishing techniques to try and get their hands on a victim’s banking details. 

Marking the start of the campaign, FFA UK released some interesting numbers: Almost three quarters (73 per cent) of people think they know the methods fraudsters use, yet more than a quarter (26 per cent) admit giving personal information to people claiming to be from their bank, even though they shouldn’t. The most common reason why people give their information away is because the other party ‘seemed genuine’ (43 per cent), or because they felt pressured (39 per cent). 

Another third (38 per cent) did it just to get it over with, because they were busy doing something else. “Many people already know the dos and don’ts when it comes to sharing personal details, but it is easy to forget if you feel flustered, pressurised or rushed into sharing information,” said Tony Blake, Senior Fraud Prevention Officer, DCPCU (Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit).  

“Take Five is about knowing it is fine to stop a conversation or not to respond to an email so you can take a moment to think and take back control of the situation. Everyone needs to be vigilant and safeguard their information – if you get any calls, texts or emails out of the blue asking for your personal or financial details always take a moment to stop and think."

Image Credit: Gustavo Frazao / Shutterstock

Sead Fadilpašić

Sead is a freelance journalist with more than 15 years of experience in writing various types of content, from blogs, whitepapers, and reviews to ebooks, and many more, across sites including Al Jazeera Balkans, TechRadar Pro, IT Pro Portal, and CryptoNews.