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Bank accounts number one target for fraudsters


Bank accounts have beaten mortgages to become the number one target for financial fraud in the UK, according to Experian.

In the first three months of 2015, 0.89% of all current account applications came from fraudsters. This is compared to 0.83% of mortgages applied for.
The rise is due to an increase in identity fraud over the past year. This is when a fraudster would use someone else’s stolen details to set up a current account. 49% of current accounts that were applied for fraudulently were set up with a stolen identity. That was up from 32% in the first three months of 2014, according to Experian.

Once a criminal opens a fake current account, they are able to fraudulently apply for other financial products, such as credit cards and loans, which will also be used to steal money.

Phishing emails is the biggest way fraudsters steal identities from people. This is when a fake email, which looks like it has been sent by a victims bank or other financial institution, will trick account holders into giving away account numbers and passwords.

Experian have warned people to remain vigilant and take measure to protect their details. Nick Mothershaw, a director of identity and fraud at Experian said:
"Knowing what your bank can and cannot ask you for will help you avoid phishing scams.
"Making sure sensitive mail is shredded is also important.”

Jon Sacker, of Financial Fraud Action UK said:
"It's important to be alert, so if you get a call, text or email out of the blue, don't reveal any information unless you are absolutely sure who you are dealing with.”

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