The FINANCIAL — Barclays data has revealed that scams targeting businesses increased by almost a third (31 per cent) in January and February, when compared with the same period last year.

According ti Barclays, impersonation scams were the most commonly used tactic by criminals to target businesses in 2020 (44 per cent), with figures more than doubling in the second half of the year when compared with the first half (62 per cent). Impersonation scams are when fraudsters pretend to be organisations or authorities in the hope that they’ll trick their victims into sharing personal or banking information – or to even transfer money out of their account.

The bank is issuing a scams warning to all businesses, but particularly those in the property and construction sector, as the data reveals that small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in this sector made up almost a quarter of all business scams last year (24 per cent). On average, each scam cost property and construction SMEs a staggering £4,110.

Barclays has partnered with football legend and TV presenter Dion Dublin to raise awareness of the growing dangers of fraud and scams, and the sophisticated tactics criminals are using to defraud businesses. When he’s not presenting on the TV, Dion’s time is spent running several businesses.

Dion Dublin said: “I’ve experienced fraudulent activity before, with criminals first trying to take £400 and then £1,600 out of my personal business account….

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