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Brits lose £7.5bn to scammers in the last 12 months

Nick Cheek
Written By:
Nick Cheek

Scammers stole an estimated £7.5bn from Brits in the last year, according to a fraud prevention service.

One in ten scam victims were targeted by fraudsters and over half (62%) received at least one scam message a month.

A total of 58% of the 2,000 adults surveyed by the Global Anti-Scam Alliance and Cifas also acknowledged a significant rise in scam encounters over the past year.

Digital fraud is ever-growing and email services Gmail and Outlook were popular methods for con artists and were used in 64% of scams.

Not only are scammers costing victims financially, but fraudsters are also inflicting emotional and psychological trauma on victims, as 46% said they experienced a ‘strong to traumatic’ emotional impact after being scammed.

Although 31% of scam victims are seeking professional help to cope with the emotions of being conned, there are still two thirds (66%) who decide to keep the ordeal private and opt against reporting the crime.

Many scam victims refusing to report crime to authorities

Over the last 12 months, fraudsters continue to branch out into different markets and they’ve targeted potential victims through pensions, fake tickets and even fake relationships.

Mike Haley, the CEO of Cifas commented: “Scams have now reached an unprecedented level, with criminals and career fraudsters constantly looking for new opportunities to scam UK citizens and cause significant distress to victims.

“In 2022, Cifas members recorded over 409,000 cases of fraudulent conduct to our National Fraud Database as criminals took advantage of the ongoing cost-of-living crisis to steal identities and take over customer accounts.

“UK consumers continue to find themselves increasingly targeted by phishing and smishing campaigns offering financial help or investment opportunities, employment scams, fake adverts for rental properties as well as purchase and delivery scams.”

“So now more than ever, we need to ensure there is more, effective regulation of online platforms and recognise the serious harm that their fraudulent content is causing to consumers.”