Online Fraud #2

Last week I talked about the rather bizarre attitude that the police and banking institutions seem to have towards credit card fraud and how it has become the fastest growing form of crime in this country.

At present the issue simply doesn’t seem to be a focus of attention for the authorities, most probably because it isn’t something that is in the public eye.As long as consumers are protected and small businesses are left to pick up the tab then why should the police stop these people getting away with theft?

Unsurprisingly I don’t feel the same; if someone is stealing money off anyone, whether it’s a business or individual then they deserve to be caught.In an attempt to push this issue out further in to the public eye, I have below an e-mail from another local company which I received on the day of publication of my last article.

“I just wanted to drop you a quick email commending you for the excellent article written in the Herald Express on 11 April.We too are an Internet based business and like you we have been targeted and earlier last year heavily stung on a number of transactions totalling approx £2000.

We reported the matter to the relevant banking agencies who discouraged us from wasting our time by reporting the matter to the Police.Having previously been victims of identity theft we were unsurprised, though highly frustrated by this attitude as the Police were not interested in identity theft and so were unlikely to do anything about this type of “hard to solve” fraudulent activity either.With a heavy heart, we as new business owners had to reluctantly carry the loss and adjust to less income than anticipated.

Your article hits the nail right on the head on every level and it wholeheartedly echoes our experience and sentiments. It’s quite amazing that this kind of activity is allowed to go unchecked particularly when compared to the effort that goes into other perhaps less serious issues. It would be wonderful, though perhaps naive to think some sort of robust Police action would be initiated as a result of your own and I’m sure countless others articles, however I won’t be holding my breath!

Phil Edwards, Director


In the past we have actually contacted the police and card companies stating that we have received a transaction which we know is clearly fraudulent going to a residential flat address.We have offered to send the goods and give a time and date when the package will be delivered, so all that is required is for a policeman to shadow the courier, wait for the goods to be signed for, then swoop in and arrest the culprit.The police do this a couple of times, get the cases on the news and suddenly card fraud in this country plummets as fraudsters begin to worry about the fear of prosecution.

Unfortunately we were told that they were simply too busy to bother with cases like this and that card fraud wasn’t an issue for them.Now, some might consider it ironic that today on Radio One I heard about a woman who is to be dragged before the Crown Court because police were ‘tipped off’ that she threw an apple core out of her parked car window.What started out as a £60 fine sent to her home address has now escalated to a £5,000 legal case as the woman, a mother of three, vehemently denies throwing the bio-degradable piece of fruit and wants to clear her name.She understands that if found guilty she could face up to six months in jail.

On one hand you have someone who is stealing tens of thousands of pounds from countless companies and getting away completely scot-free.On the other you have a mother of three who you have been told threw an apple core out of her window so which do you prosecute?It’s got to be the fruit thrower, surely?



About the Author - Chris Holgate works for Refresh Cartridges who supply a wide range of printer cartridges at the UK’s lowest prices.