Cashless payment fraud: € 800 million in France in 2016

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The first annual report of the Observatory on the security of the means of payment provides a precise statistical light on the fraud of non-cash payments in 2016.

Of the 27,000 billion euros exchanged in France last year, fraud represented a total amount of 800 million euros for 4.8 million fraudulent transactions. The credit card is the most defrauded payment method in volume with 400 million euros, followed by the check with 272 million euros, well ahead of direct debit and transfer.

Slight decline in payment card fraud

With a fraud rate reaching 0.064%, the payment card supports more than 50% of cashless payment fraud in France in 2016. As the Observatory's report highlights, this type of fraud has two particularities: first it focuses on remote payments, mainly on the Web, which represent 2/3 of the amount of fraud when they represent only 12% of transactions, and secondly, it affects cross-border transactions more strongly (60 % of the amount of fraud) than national ones (15%).

The theft of card information to carry out fraudulent transactions remotely is the main source of fraud with 70% in amount, ahead of fraud related to theft / loss of card representing 29%.

The implementation of strong authentication devices during remote payments such as the 3D-Secure procedure with sending validation code by SMS or e-mail has nevertheless made it possible to reduce the amount of fraud on transactions by 4%, while the use of cards has increased by 6%.

Contactless payment in full expansion

The so-called contactless payment, booming since early 2016, proves to be a safe way to make proximity payments with a fraud rate of 0.02%, which comes in the vast majority of cases from theft or loss of the map and not a technological vulnerability. The Observatory recalls that the law protects the card holder in the event of fraud and that he has thirteen months to contest unauthorized transactions.

Following the public's enthusiasm for contactless payment by card, Loys Moulin, director of development at the CB bank cards group, also announced on January 30, 2017 at RTL's microphone, that he wanted to raise the ceiling from € 20 to € 30. by payment in fall 2017.

Checks: little used, many defrauded

Only fourth in terms of use and less and less favored by the French (-8% in number of transactions compared to 2016), the check comes second in the list of the most defrauded means of payment with a rate of 0.025% and an average amount of defrauded check of 2300 euros.

The fraudulent use of lost or stolen checks accounts for 45% of the amount defrauded, followed closely by the forgery of regularly issued checks.

Proportionately less affected transfers and direct debits The transfer, which remains the preferred means for transactions with large amounts such as the payment of wages, alone represents 88% of the total amount of cashless payments and is also the one with the lowest fraud rate with only € 1 of fraud for € 275,000 of payment (i.e. 0.0004%).

The direct debit displays a fraud rate higher than the transfer but still limited with 0.003%.

How to limit the risk of fraud?

Increased vigilance and attention on the part of users offers better protection of transactions against increasingly ingenuous fraudsters.

It is important to remember that a bank or administration will never ask for card information, either by email or by phone.

When making a payment on the Internet, checking the security of the site is essential (URL address starting with https) and it is also strongly recommended to ensure the seriousness of the merchant before carrying out a transaction.

Finally, a rapid reaction in the event of loss or theft of a payment instrument can avoid certain frauds, by opposing your bank and filing a complaint in the event of theft as soon as possible.


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