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Internet fraud hits tech fans hardest

07 August 2018 - 12:52 by Mike Price

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New figures published by the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau suggest that British men of between 31 and 40 years old are particularly susceptible to web-based cons.

The Telegraph reports that people in this age group have lost over £22 million to tricksters, typically as part of an attempt to snap up the latest gadgets via safe shopping online.

The latest annual figures for internet fraud are worrying and show that men are far more likely to fall victim to this type of con than women, representing 61 per cent of the total reported cases.

Analysts revealed that men are being duped by online ads which claim to offer the opportunity to buy brand new devices at bargain prices, covering everything from smartphones and computers to clothing and footwear. When clicking through to apparently legitimate-looking sites, the victims of this type of crime are then compelled to enter their personal details, at which point crooks can steal cash from their accounts and wreak havoc with their identities.

As a result of these findings, a new campaign has been launched by the Metropolitan Police in order to raise awareness about the growth of web-based fraud.

The general advice is to only shop with reputable retailers to ensure that it is possible to carry out safe shopping online, while avoiding any products which are advertised at a price that is too good to be true.

This latter point can be tough to determine, since in most cases the fraudulent ads are not so low in price as to be out of the realms of possibility; gangs are constantly adjusting them to make sure that they are pitched at an almost-believable level.

Average losses from this type of fraud are around £1200 so it is certainly something that consumers should learn to identify.