The research, conducted by YouGov, reveals:
HSBC UK’s own data shows that the number of ‘Purchase Scams’, where you are paying for items online, was over 20% higher in March this year than the previous month, with 1,000 cases (32 cases per day) reported, the highest number for over 18 months.
Money is being put at risk due to cost of living bargain-hunting and cutting corners to cut costs.
David Callington, HSBC UK’s Head of Fraud, said: “We know with increased cost of living, and when money is tight, people are more likely to seek out a bargain, and we also know that cutting corners to cut costs can put our customers’ money at risk. Our research shows that potentially millions of people are willing to make payments outside of an approved app or online payment process, opening themselves up to scammers who are preying on those willing to take the risk.
“Scammers are devious criminals who use a range of techniques to steal money from people without any concern for the mental or financial wellbeing of their victims. Ruining a romantic bank holiday weekend away or a family holiday is purely collateral damage to a scammer. They are only interested in getting your money, not the impact it will have on you, your family or your finances.
“With last minute arrangements being made for the bank holiday, and with the school summer holiday approaching, the temptation to snap up a bargain might in fact lead you to losing all of the money you send as a payment. Whether people are booking to stay at a property though dedicated websites, or buying new or used items through online marketplaces, many of the platforms give you the opportunity to connect with the provider or seller before making a payment, and many people are sadly willing to put hundreds or even thousands of pounds at risk by agreeing to take the payment offline, outside of the authorised process. By doing this, you are effectively turning it into a private agreement and losing the protection the platform has in place should the sale be a scam, isn’t as described or you need to cancel.”
Typically, purchase scams:
HSBC UK Media Relations, Steve Gracey, 07920 413401
Notes to editors:
About HSBC UK:
HSBC UK serves over 14.75 million customers across the UK, supported by 24,000 colleagues. HSBC UK offers a complete range of retail banking and wealth management to personal and private banking customers, as well as commercial banking for small to medium businesses and large corporates. HSBC UK is a wholly owned subsidiary of HSBC Holdings plc.HSBC Holdings plc, the parent company of HSBC, is headquartered in London. HSBC serves customers worldwide from offices in 62 countries and territories. With assets of $2,990bn at 31 March 2023, HSBC is one of the world’s largest banking and financial services organisations.