Top stories

  1. UK Finance releases latest fraud figures
  2. Cabinet unifies behind PM’s Chequers plan

Stat of the day

£145.4 million – the amount stolen due to APP scams in the period of January to June 2018 according to UK Finance

UK Finance releases latest fraud figures

A number of media including The BBC (online only), The Times (p21, £) and the Daily Mail (p1) report that more than £500m was stolen from customers of British banks in the first half of 2018, of which £145m was due to authorised push payment (APP) scams and £358m was lost to unauthorised fraud, according to figures published today from UK Finance.

Katy Worobec, UK Finance’s managing director for economic crime, said the new figures underlined that fraud was a “major threat” to the UK, and added that the “proceeds go on to fund terrorism, people smuggling and drug trafficking”. Ms Worobec also emphasised that two-thirds of all unauthorised fraud was successfully thwarted by UK financial institutions. “Purchase scams”, in which people are duped into paying for products or services that do not exist, were the most prevalent form of APP fraud reported in the first six months of 2018. The article reports there were also 3,866 reported cases of impersonation scams, in which criminals pretend to be from a financial institution or law enforcement, and trick accountholders into transferring money.

Commenting, Stephen Jones, CEO of UK Finance said, ‘Enough is enough – payment fraud is a crime, it has victims and it fuels organised criminal activity. And increasingly it is being driven by breaches of customer data security outside the banking and payments sector. Our members across the banking and payments industry are working tirelessly to tackle this scourge on our society but cannot defeat the criminals on their own. Any organisation that holds customer data whether in the retail, utility, travel or other sectors has a duty to ensure that this data doesn’t fall in to the hands of thieves. The banking and payments industry is already working closely with government and law enforcement to take up this challenge, but we now need all industries to make this a priority too, stepping up to help us stamp payment fraud out.’

Separately the Daily Mirror (print only, p9) reports that more than £21 million was stolen using computer software service scams last year according to Action Fraud which logged more than 22,709 reports of these crimes with an average victim age of 63.

Cabinet unifies behind PM’s Chequers plan

The Times (p1, £) reports that cabinet ministers have come together to support the Prime Minister’s Chequers plans ahead of the party conference. It is reported that the Prime Minister also secured cabinet support for her new immigration system post-Brexit which, No.10 claims, will make it easier for skilled immigration to the UK while restricting those migrants at the lower skills end. The article also claims that the Chancellor Philip Hammond and Business Secretary Greg Hands called for more time to be given to businesses in order to avoid a “cliff edge” Brexit, but failed to garner support from their Remain supporting colleagues. Meanwhile, Sir Keir Starmer MP has confirmed that Labour will vote against the Prime Minister’s Brexit deal ahead of the party’s major debate on the issue this morning (Financial Times p2, £).

The Financial Times (p14, £) also reports that ten foreign banks have chosen to move operations and staff from London to Frankfurt, lifting the city’s total tally of “Brexit banks” to twenty five, according to a new survey by state-owned Frankfurt-based lender, Helaba.

Latest from UK Finance

Dr Roger Miles, specialist risk researcher and practitioner, and Conduct Risk and Culture Academy faculty lead, answers a Q&A on Conduct regulation: Past, present and future, ahead of our upcoming Conduct Risk and Culture Academy.

News in Brief

The Confederation of British Industry and the Institute of Directors have warned that Jeremy Corbyn’s economic plans could lead to an ‘economic deep freeze’ (Telegraph £, p1).

The British government will step in to bail out a £335 million new Royal Liverpool Hospital, after the collapse of Carillion, which was overseeing the deal (Reuters, online only).

China has issued a 36,000-word white paper accusing the US of “economic hegemony” that threatens the global multilateral trading system as well as Sino-US ties the Guardian (p29) reports.

What the commentators say

Writing in The Times, Rachel Sylvester claims there is growing tension between John McDonnell and Jeremy Corbyn. The division between them, Sylvester claims, is due to the fact that Corbyn is an ideological purist, while McDonnell is a pragmatist who will do what he needs to take power to “ferment the overthrow of capitalism” as he once put it. In her piece, Sylvester quotes an anonymous senior City source who says that the “radical” McDonnell is setting the agenda while the Tories are embroiled in a “civil war”. She concludes by saying that McDonnell is happy to advocate reform on his road to revolution, as he wants Labour to be a party of power, rather than protest (The Times £, p25).

Katie Martin and Philip Stafford of the Financial Times (online only, £) comment on how UK regulators are losing patience with banks over Libor ahead of the 2021 ‘switch off’ deadline. They remark that without Libor, thousands of contracts lose the reference rate that forms the basis of their value. Its claimed that informing investors of the implications of this has been neglected due to Brexit and MiFid regulations. Martin and Stafford conclude that new bonds that still use Libor as their reference do come with ‘fallback’ elements, however UK regulators want the market to transition into using a reformed benchmark.

Calendar

  • UK Finance ‘Fighting Fraud’ report published
  • Jeremy Corbyn is expected to deliver the keynote speech at Labour Conference
  • Donald Trump addresses the U.N.
  • PRA consultation on ‘UK leverage ratio’ closes

For a full list of upcoming UK Finance statistics releases, please click here.

News in brief – 25 September 2018