The Government is preparing a task force to combat an increase in financial and bank crimes that are destroying the lives of Britons.
More than £745m was stolen from customers’ bank accounts in the first half of this year – and authorised push-payment fraud, in which scammers persuade consumers to transfer funds from their accounts, went up by 70 per cent.
Stop the Bank Scammers Campaign by The Mail is calling for actions against fraud. Fraud has grown to be the UK’s most serious crime. Gangs are using social media, mobile networks, and landline phones to con consumers into paying them a lot of money.
Wrecking lives: More than £745m was stolen from customers’ bank accounts in the first half of this year
Joe Garner – who is expected to step down as chief executive of Nationwide building society next year – has been asked to lead the task force by the Treasury. According to his sources, he wants other departments of the Government to participate.
Criminals have become good at breaching bank defences to empty accounts – thanks in part to the failure of telecoms firms and Silicon Valley giants to gather information on the fraudsters and erect barriers.
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport is responsible for policing such firms.
Financial institutions and banks are being pressured to increase their defenses and compensate. Most financial institutions have declined to compensate clients, except when it was proven they were negligent during their checks.
It is becoming increasingly frustrating for the banking industry to be asked to cover fraud costs when its system has detailed security controls to guard online account holders from being scammed.
According to a senior banker, the compensation system is a system that’rewards criminal activity’ as well as enriching the perpetrators. Millions of pounds in stolen funds are turned into cryptocurrencies after arriving in sham bank accounts set up by thieves – making the money almost impossible to recover.
UK Finance represents the banking industry and has issued a warning in its recent report. ‘These fraudsters don’t have any cheeky chances, but they’re organized, ruthless criminals who use sophisticated techniques to fool people into giving them financial or personal information.
To combat fraudsters, ministers were under immense pressure to pass the Online Safety Bill.
Chairman of the Commons Treasury Committee, MP Mel Stride said that it was clear that more action is required.
“We’ve been told heartbreaking stories about victims of scammers. We have also called for online platforms not to take advertising money from fraudsters, and instead protect their users.