UK contactless fraud increased by 150% in 2016

By | May 26, 2017

The amount of contactless payment fraud in the UK hit £7 million in 2016, up from £2.8 million in 2015.

Contactless spending in the same period soared from £7.75 billion to £25.2 billion, according to research from Financial Fraud Action UK. Cards have a maximum spend of £30, but can be used at multiple terminals before the user is required to use their PIN

Andrew Bailey, Chief Executive of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) admits that the “overall risk is low” but adds that the watchdog has been working “urgently” with card schemes and banks to ensure the issue is fixed.

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A judge in Devon labelled contactless payments “quite ludicrous” after hearing how a contactless card was used in a shop after a theft.

The judge said: “You can make these contactless payments now. It seems quite ludicrous that banks allow this to happen. It seems anyone who steals a card can wave it around until it is reported as stolen.”

The FCA hit out at major banks earlier this year, claiming that customers are being wrongly blamed for fraudulent payments. Users should not feel pressured into identifying fraudulent payments on contactless cards when they are lost or stolen, it said.

The Chairman of the FCA, John Griffith-Jones, wrote that while contactless fraud only accounts for 0.5% of all card fraud “public confidence could be eroded without further action”.

Source: Ibis Intelligence