Losses from Credit Card Fraud in 2011 Hit $278 Million

  @ibtimesau on

One unintended consequence of boom in ecommerce is a corresponding increase in credit card fraud cases. Reports said that in 2011, over one million cases of card fraud were recorded in Australia.

The total losses from these incidents reached $278 million, which is almost twice the 2009 level. The fraud is equivalent to 96 cents of fraud for every $1,000 spent with cards. It is up from the 67.2 cents in 2009.

The average value of each fraudulent transaction is $250.

'Customers are becoming more comfortable with the concept of shopping online and with that comes the potential for having those credentials compromised," Fairfax quoted National Australia Bank head of cyber security Nick Scott.

"We've got more transactions and shopping occurring online than has traditionally occurred so that's driving these losses," he added.

NAB attributed the increase in card losses to hacking of online retailers, stolen card details and compromises in home computers.

The Reserve Bank of Australia estimates that Aussies make more than 152 million credit card transactions monthly.

Steven Munchenberg, the chief executive of the Australian Bankers Association, said that in cases of fraud, customers are not liable for losses from unauthorised transactions when it is clear that they have not contributed to the loss.

While credit card fraud cases in Australia is on an upward trend, cheque fraud dipped drastically as the use of cheque moved towards obsolescence. There were only 883 suspect cheques written in 2011 with a value of $8.8 million. It is down from $18.1 million in 2009.

Join the Discussion