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Is embarrassment holding back the reporting of fraud?

Despite the fact that a number of reports on both off-line and online fraud in the UK have shown a significant rise in victim numbers, there is growing concern that the vast majority of frauds are never reported to the authorities. Recently we saw the announcement that 15,000 frauds have been reported to the National Fraud Centre in the first quarter of 2010 which is a significant increase on previous quarters. So what is holding back reporting of fraud in the UK?

There is no doubt that embarrassment and shame is stopping some people from reporting fraud in the UK at a time when the wider population needs to know exactly what is going on. In many cases it is the simple nature of these frauds, which often play on desperation and greed, which seems to be preventing people from stepping forward. The truth is that if one fraud can save potentially 10 other victims in the future then at least there is a small amount of benefit.

In reality, these fraudsters, no matter how simple these frauds may look, are well trained in spotting weaknesses and opportunities. There is no shame in being caught out by fraudulent activity although we do need to learn how to spot such issues in the future.

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