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Young fraudsters on the rise


The cost of fraud committed by people aged 26-35 increased by 285% during the first half of 2014, according to a report by accountancy company KPMG.

Fraudsters in this age group conned their victims out of £62m in the six months to July 2014, meaning there could be a shift in who the stereotypical con artist is.

The research suggested that fraudsters are getting younger due to the generations “ease with using technology and data as selling promises”.

Hitesh Patel, UK forensic partner at KPMG said: "Where once it was the jaded executive who relied on unquestioned seniority and authority to get away with dipping their hands in the till, it seems we are witnessing a changing of the guard."

However, despite the increase in young con artists, total fraud dropped by 39% to £317m in the same time period.

This overall decline was mainly due to a 72% drop in fraudsters who are aged 46 and over, as this age category accounted for £88m.

Extravagant lifestyles

The research revealed that con artists have successfully tricked over 400 people into handing over sums which ranged from £20,000 to £2m during the first six months of 2014.

It was also suggested that younger criminals are using the stolen money to fund extravagant lifestyles, as some used funds to buy Lamborghini sports cars and luxury houses.

One fraudster even bought a fleet of supercars, invested in a racehorse and sponsored two Premier League football clubs.

In order to pull off the con, the ‘adviser’ created a bogus investment fund which investors could transfer money to. However, instead of investing the money in the hope of making a return for his clients, he simply spent the cash on funding his own extravagant lifestyle.

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