The NFIB report identified a continued increase in the number of reports of online shopping and auction fraud. Victim’s typically purchased a product from a website, but after payment did not receive the item or found that the item did not match the description. The NFIB noted a trend in the use of Ukash vouchers in the reported frauds. In many of the cases fraudsters encouraged the use of Ukash with the incentive of free delivery if payment was made via Ukash voucher codes.
The Ukash e-commerce payment system consists of pre-paid vouchers with unique serial numbers. These can be purchased at in shops or online. The voucher can be used at any online vendor who accepts Ukash simply by entering the unique serial number. The NFIB believe that this payment method is increasingly used because the serial number of the payment can only be traced to the victim and the identity of the recipient of the funds remains hidden.
The NFIB expects this type of fraud to increase in the following months as criminals exploit the high demand for certain products in the Christmas shopping period.
The NFIB report identified that vishing is becoming an increasingly common threat. Vishing (social engineering fraud using the telephone system) is typically used by criminals as an effective method of enhancing identity data originally compromised through other means such as phishing. One of the main methods identified by the NFIB is Courier Fraud where the perpetrator uses vishing techniques to impersonate an official in order to deceive the victim into providing further personal data, cards and PINs or other authentication tokens.
An example of Courier Fraud given by the NFIB is where the criminal informs the victim that someone (e.g. a police officer or courier) will attend their home to collect their bank card as there is a problem with the card. The NFIB believe that organised crime groups are involved in many of the Courier Frauds and that the threat will continue to grow.
The NFIB is government-funded and run by the City of London Police, which is the National Lead Force for fraud, in partnership with police forces and the public and private sector.