In March, a bakery owner in South West England received a curious SMS from her bike courier. 

The baker, whose canelés are famous in her city, supplies pastries to nearby cafes and other bakeries. She relies on couriers to get fresh pastries to those businesses early in the morning, and the bakery and the courier service have a years-old
partnership. 

So, it wasn’t surprising that she received an SMS from the courier asking for shipment details. It was surprising, however, when the courier asked for her banking details. That’s when a red flag went up, and the baker called the courier service. 

It turns out scammers had spoofed the courier’s phone number and had been requesting bank details from all of their customers. This is known as an authorized push payment scam, and it is one of many types of fraud on the rise in the UK. 

In September, UK Finance released their 2021 Half Year Fraud Report, which put numbers to this trend: 

  • Authorized push payment fraud saw a 71 per cent increase compared to the same period last year. 
  • Remote banking fraud saw a 67 per cent increase. 

While financial institutions understood that these types of scams were on the rise, the actual figures shocked some people in the industry.  

Every day, scammers defraud business owners, mobile banking customers, remote employees and even dating app users out of their money. These scams prey upon a combination of factors: 

  • Speed at which industry regulations are…

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