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Shopping Online Now More Secure Than Ever

16 March 2010 - 09:23 by Simon Crisp

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It looks as though there has never been a better time to head on to the computer and do some safe shopping online with the net being more secure than ever.

The UK Cards Association has just published some figures which signal good news for anyone worried about the security of the credit or debit cards they use while making purchases over the net. The figures say that card-not-present fraud, that is fraud committed over the internet, over the telephone or via mail order, has actually fallen for the first time ever.

Card-not-present fraud fell from £328.4 million back in 2008 to £266.4 million in 2009, a decrease of 19%, according to the latest statistics. Previously, this particular type of fraud had continued to rise, but it seems that e-Retailers and banks, employing a variety of schemes and systems to enable safe shopping online, are beginning to win the fight against fraudsters.

Fraud prevention groups and other experts have highlighted certain methods of fraud prevention as being key to the decrease in card-not-present fraud. These include the use of MasterCard SecureCode and Visa's Verified by Visa system by retailers and by consumers themselves, both of which make online shopping safer. In addition, the fraud screening detection tools used by banks and retailers have improved.

But it was not all good news, as fraud losses relating to online banking rose from £52.5 million in 2008 to £59.7 million in 2009, an increase of 14%. Overall, however, the new fraud statistics were generally positive, with fraud losses on UK cards altogether down to £440.3 million, a decrease of 28% on the statistics from 2008. Experts say that prevention strategies such as chip and pin systems are also to thank for this, with card fraud losses since 2004 having decreased by a significant 67%.