Under-21s at risk of debit and credit card fraud as incidents increase by 24 per cent

New figures published by fraud prevention service Cifas have revealed an alarming increase in incidents of fraud involving young people with a 24 per cent rise in under-21s falling victim to identity fraud in the first nine months of the year.

Thursday, 8th November 2018, 12:00 pm
Updated Thursday, 8th November 2018, 1:01 pm

The majority of fraud for under-21s related to plastic payment cards – such as bank, debit, credit or store cards – with 34 per cent of all cases reported in that sector, a 79 per cent increase in the past year.

Cifas has also reported a steep rise in the number of young people acting as ‘money mules’, with a 26 per cent rise in reported incidents in those aged 21 and younger between 2017 and 2018.

So far in 2018, 9,636 money mules aged less than 21 have been identified in the UK by Cifas.

Tim Drew

Money mules allow their bank accounts – often unwittingly – to be used to facilitate the movement of criminal funds, thereby exposing themselves to a charge of money laundering, an offence which carries a maximum prison sentence of up to 14 years.

|Also in the news - a senior councillor has been quizzed on why weekly refuse collections in Adur and Worthing will be scrapped; Stephen Frith’s elderly father issued an emotional video appeal over the tragic murder of his Worthing son; and a jury has concluded that an 18-year-old patient at a Worthing mental health clinic died as a result of her mental health issues which led her to self harm|

Cifas is now urging banks to do more to provide information to young people when they first open an account to warn them of the implications of becoming a money mule.

Mike Haley, chief executive of Cifas, said: “Our new figures are alarming to say the least. Young people are increasingly at risk of becoming victims of identify fraud, with little idea of how to protect themselves.

“All of us, as parents, teachers, and responsible citizens, have a duty to ensure we are taking every opportunity to educate young people on the dangers of becoming a fraud victim – and equally, a perpetrator of fraud.”

The next meeting of the Tarring Community Forum meeting takes place on Tuesday at 7pm at the West Worthing Baptist Church Centre, South Street.

Prior to this, the monthly litter pick in Tarring Park begins at 10am on Saturday.

• For more information about the Worthing & Adur Neighbourhood Watch Associations click here.


Benefit from an ongoing discount on your Herald by joining our voucher membership scheme. Once you’ve subscribed we’ll send you dated vouchers which can be exchanged for your paper at any news outlet. To save money on your Herald simply click here.