Online banking fraud victims in Thames Valley lost nearly £7 million in 2020-21

A huge sum of cash has been lost to fraudsters during the pandemic year.

Monday, 17th May 2021, 8:53 am
Be careful online!

 Thames Valley Police reported 971 cases of cheque, plastic card and online bank account fraud from April 2020 to March 2021 and those who fell prey to the crime incurred a collective financial loss of £6.7 million

 Metropolitan Police had the highest number of cheque, plastic card, and online bank account fraud cases between April 2020 – March 2021, at 4,224

 Overall, from 44 police forces in UK, there were 25,717 cases of cheque, plastic card, and online bank account fraud from April 2020 to March 2021

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 From the 25,717 cases, the accumulative financial loss victims suffered was £161,221,800 million

These figures come from MoneyTransfers.com, who analysed the latest data from the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau on 44 police forces/constabularies to establish which areas of the UK have experienced the most cheque, plastic card and online bank account fraud causes from April 2020 to March 2021 (the financial year of 2020-21).

Data shows there were 25,717 cases of cheque, plastic card and online bank account fraud recorded by 44 police forces between April 2020 to March 2021.

During this period, July 2020 (2,349 cases) was the worst month, followed by November 2020 (2,341).

Whilst April 2020 saw the least number of cases at 1,851.

Additionally, from the 25,717 cases, the collective financial loss that victims suffered was an astronomical £161,221,800 – that equates to a financial loss of £6,269 per case!

Thames Valley Police are in fourth place nationally as they received 971 reported cases of cheque, plastic card and online bank account fraud from April 2020 to March 2021.

During this period, June 2020 (106 cases) was the worst month. Whilst February 2021 saw the least number of cases at 60. From those who were targeted, the financial loss equated to £6.7 million; that is comparable to a personal loss of £6,900 for each individual case.

Top of the UK list was the Metropolitan Police who had the highest number of cheque, plastic card and online bank account fraud cases from April 2020 to March 2021, at a shocking 4,224 reports, the equivalent of 12 incidents per day in the capital.

From the 4,224 cases, the accumulative financial loss victims incurred was a colossal £32.3 million.

The following advice could help you to avoid falling victim to a online scam.

1) Stay Vigilant

Even though it may feel taxing, it is a good idea to keep a close eye on your monthly bank statement(s) to make sure there is no unusual activity and if there is, report it immediately to your

respective bank(s). Likewise, opt to shred any financial documents you intend not to keep.

2) Avoid Public Wi-Fi Hotspots

Do not use public Wi-Fi hotspots such as those in coffee shops and libraries to access online banking or carry out financial transactions as you cannot be certain how your personal information is being tracked and logged by their respective networks.

3) Take Online Banking Precautions

Only access online banking via your bank providers official website and not by means such as clicking on a link provided in an email. Likewise, when it comes to mobile banking, only use your bank providers official app and keep the app updated for the latest and strongest security protection.

4) Have Strong Credentials

Make the password for your online banking as sophisticated as possible – this includes using a combination of numbers, special characters, uppercase and lowercase letters. When it comes to the pin for your bank card, don’t make it very obvious such as the current year (e.g. 2021) or a combination of credentials from your date of birth (e.g. dd/mm, mm/yr etc).