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North East households least at risk of fraud – data reveals who scammers target

Byadmin

Sep 5, 2022 #Crime, #news

Over 40 million Britons have been targeted by scammers this year, with losses per person higher than in other major Western economies (the US, Canada, Australia). Named ‘fraud capital of the world’, total losses have crept to almost £3bn a year in the UK!

But, which type of people are most likely to fall victim to scams?

Intrigued, Claims.co.uk examined official ONS survey data from 33,735 people over the age of 16, to uncover the most common characteristics of fraud and computer misuse victims in the UK. With scammers on the rise, a cybersecurity expert’s tips on keeping personal details safe online were also obtained.

Households who fall victim to fraud possess THESE characteristics:

Structure of household

% of fraud victims

 

Total household income

% of fraud victims

 

Region

% of fraud victims

Single adult and child(ren)

8.9

 

£52,000 or more

9.1

 

South East

8.8

Adults and child(ren)

7.0

 

£41,600 to less than £52,000

8.0

 

East

8.1

Adult(s) and no children

6.4

 

£20,800 to less than £31,200

7.2

 

London

7.5

 

£31,200 to less than £41,600

6.5

 

East Midlands

7.2

 

£41,600 to less than £52,000

8.0

 

South West

6.0

For the full data breakdown, please click here [includes number of bar visits, household characteristics etc.]

Claims.co.uk can reveal that residents in the North East are the least at risk of fraud, with merely 3.8% of respondents admitting to being scammed. This is 5% less than South East households, which have the highest likelihood of being scammed.

Data also shows that fraudsters seem to target single adults with children (8.9%) the most, with adults without kids (6.4%) being the least likely to get scammed. The wealthy are also popular targets with 9.1% of households earning £52,000 or more falling victim to fraud.

Individuals who fall victim to fraud possess THESE characteristics:

Age group

% of fraud victims

 

Occupation

% of fraud victims

 

Marital status

% of fraud victims

 

Financial loss suffered by victims of fraud

% of fraud victims

45-54

7.7

 

Managerial/profess-ional occupations

8.1

 

Divorced

7.9

 

£100 – £249

21.8

55-64

7.3

 

Intermediate occupations

7.1

 

Separated

7.6

 

£50 – £99

15.6

25-34

7.2

 

Routine & manual occupations

5.4

 

Cohabiting

7.0

 

£20 – £49

15.1

35-44

7.1

 

Full-time students

5.3

 

Single

6.8

 

£250 – £499

13.9

16-24

6.4

 

Not classified

5.2

 

Married/civil partnered

6.6

 

£500 – £999

9.6

Contrary to popular belief that the elderly are more vulnerable to scams,  Claims.co.uk can reveal that Gen X are the most reckless, with those aged between 45 to 54 years old (7.7%) falling victim to fraud the most! This is 2.2% more than those between 65 to 74 years old (5.5%).

Those with higher social status are more likely to be the target of scammers, with 8.1% of victims being professionals or those at managerial levels. Additionally, divorcees (7.9%) are also more susceptible to fraud than married couples (6.6%).

The most common amount of financial loss suffered by victims is revealed to be around £100 to £249 (21.8%), while the biggest loss recorded (£40,000 or more) was only suffered by 0.5% of those scammed.

Individuals who fall victim to computer misuse possess THESE characteristics:

Age group

% of computer misuse victims

 

Occupation

% of computer misuse victims

 

Marital status

% of computer misuse victims

25-34

1.9

 

Managerial/professional occupations

2.3

 

Single

1.9

16-24

1.8

 

Full-time students

1.8

 

Cohabiting

1.8

35-44

1.8

 

Intermediate occupations

1.4

 

Divorced

1.6

55-64

1.8

 

Not classified

1.2

 

Married/civil partnered

1.5

45-54

1.4

 

Routine/manual occupations

0.9

 

Separated

1.4

The younger generation is found to be the most common victims of computer misuse, with online users aged between 25 to 34 years old  (1.9%) being the most susceptible to cyber crime. Moreover, data also reveals that North East households (0.4%) are the least at risk, having 2% fewer victims than in the East of England (2.4%).

For the full data breakdown, please click here.

As online scams become increasingly sophisticated, Jon Dukes, head of IT at DVAD, offered guidance on how to keep personal details safe online:

  1. Create memorable passwords and two-factor authentication wherever possible

It is now widely accepted that using complex passwords (a mixture of standard characters, numbers, and special characters) is not as useful as using four random words. This provides better password entropy whilst making it less likely that people will write down their passwords for others to find! Adding two-factor authentication to online accounts also adds an extra layer of protection by requesting information beyond just a username and password.

  1. Always keep your devices updated

Every electronic device (tablet, mobile phone, laptop) uses a software operating system. These operating systems regularly release software updates to help keep your device protected from viruses, and should be installed as soon as possible. This is to prevent scammers from accessing your personal information through new malware developments.

  1. Do not open unsolicited emails

Many fraudulent transactions start with a phishing email, so avoid opening any unexpected emails – even if they look trustworthy! Links within these emails should also be ignored as they can automatically infect your device with malware. Banks, insurance companies and government bodies will not send emails asking users to confirm any of their personal information.

  1. Install anti-virus software

All your electronic devices should have up-to-date anti-virus software installed to prevent personal information from being stolen by scammers. Anti-virus software with additional anti-spyware capabilities will also further prevent unsolicited programs from tracking your online activity, and scanning your devices for personal information such as bank details.

By admin