There has been an over 28% increase in suspected fraudulent digital transaction attempts against businesses originating from India in the pandemic year, data from global information company Transunion said on Thursday. The highest number of suspect cases were being reported from Mumbai, followed by Delhi and Chennai, according to the data.
The pandemic and the ensuing lockdowns had resulted in an over seven% contraction in the GDP growth, apart from problems on the employment front such as job losses and salary cuts.
“Fraudsters are always looking to take advantage of significant world events. The COVID-19 pandemic and its corresponding rapid digital acceleration brought about by stay at home orders is a global event unrivaled in the online age,” Shaleen Srivastava, executive vice-president and head (fraud solutions) at Transunion India, said.
A company statement said the rate of digital fraud attempts originating from India against businesses increased 28.32% in the year to March 10, 2021, which marked one year of WHO declaring the COVID-19 pandemic, as against the year-ago period.
The company came to the conclusions about fraud against businesses based on intelligence from billions of transactions and more than 40,000 global websites and apps, according to an official statement.
It has become clear that the war against coronavirus has also brought about a war against digital fraud, Srivastava said.
From an industry perspective, the suspected fraud change coming from India was the highest in the logistics sector with a 224% increase in attempts, and was followed by telecom (200% increase) and financial services (89.49%).
Notably, insurance, gaming, retail and travel and leisure reported a decrease in such attempts.
“With more people shopping online during the pandemic, goods are having to be shipped and fraudsters know this.
“So, they are targeting either redirecting genuine orders or alternatively placing fraudulent orders with compromised consumer accounts to genuine customer addresses, and then redirecting them once shipped,” the statement said.