Festive fraud set to peak this Christmas

28 November 2007

In the wake of recent news stories, ID fraud is at the forefront of everyone’s minds. Credit report provider Callcredit is warning customers about the risks of giving fraudsters an early Christmas present by failing to protect their identity when shopping online this Christmas.

With more than 27 million people expected to buy over the internet this Christmas - a 7 million increase on last year (1) - shoppers are expected to spend a record-breaking £14 billion on their online Christmas shopping, making them Europe's most internet-obsessed consumers. Callcredit warns that if people aren’t careful with their identity this increase in spending could be matched by an increase in identity theft.

Owen Roberts, Fraud Expert at Callcredit comments: “With the average Christmas spend level at £620 for individuals without children, consumers are using their credit cards on a more regular basis to help budget for it. Not only are consumers being left with a large financial hangover in the New Year, but they are putting themselves at greater risk of becoming victims of ID fraud. Unless consumers start to take some preventative steps the consequences could be very damaging.

“If you were shopping on the high street you wouldn’t leave your wallet open and we advise that you don’t do the same online. It is impossible to be 100 percent safe from identity theft; fraudsters are always looking for new ways to commit ID fraud so it is essential that consumers are aware of how to protect themselves.”

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