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New fraud attacks detected every two minutes last year

(Image credit: Image Credit: Gustavo Frazao / Shutterstock)

There were so many financial fraud attacks detected last year that, if spread out evenly, one was found every two minutes. 

Cybersecurity firm RSA Security found that many of these fraud attempts target mobile users. Fraud (opens in new tab) and brand abuse attacks on social media increased by almost two-thirds (62 per cent) year-on-year, compared to 2018. The number of rogue mobile apps found in “popular app stores” rose 175 per cent in the same period.

Also, three in five fraudulent transactions identified in Q4 2019 originated from a mobile browser.

The average value of fraudulent payments (opens in new tab) made through attacks on mobile users was $480. In total, RSA’s anti-fraud team found 255,000 different fraud attacks and more than 32 million unique compromised banking cards.

But it’s not all doom and gloom – the battle against fraud is showing promise. Recently, UK Finance claimed (opens in new tab) its specialist police prevented around $40 million of fraud, and took down 1,600 fraud-related social media accounts last year. One of the reasons for this success is a closer relationship with social media and mobile phone companies, it was said.

“Last year, we stepped up our engagement with social media firms to identify and take down over 1,600 profiles used by fraudsters, and worked closely with mobile phone companies to combat scam techniques such as ‘sim swapping’, said Detective Chief Inspector Gary Robinson, the head of the Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit (DCPCU).

“By working with a wide range of partners and government agencies, we are succeeding in disrupting the activities of Organised Crime Groups (OCGs) and showing them that fraud is not a soft target.”

Sead Fadilpašić is a freelance tech writer and journalist with more than 17 years experience writing technology-focussed news, blogs, whitepapers, reviews, and ebooks. And his work has featured in online media outlets from all over the world, including Al Jazeera Balkans (where he was a Multimedia Journalist), Crypto News, TechRadar Pro, and IT Pro Portal, where he has written news and features for over five years. Sead's experience also includes writing for inbound marketing, where he creates technology-based content for clients from London to Singapore. Sead is a HubSpot-certified content creator.