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Latest UK analysis reveals online fraud attack volumes nearly doubled last year, but UK fraudsters have a lower success rate than the rest of the world

  • Despite increasing fraud volumes, the UK enjoys lower rates of successful fraud attempts as a proportion of overall transactions (0.2%) compared to the rest of the globe (1.3%) thanks to a world-leading fraud prevention market
  • UK Banks are able to fast track ‘trusted’ traffic via mobile and app channels due to their deployment of tech-based fraud prevention technology
  • <Almost 9 in 10 (88%) UK financial services transactions are processed on mobile, with 89% of those occurring on apps.


LONDON — UK fraud attack volumes nearly doubled in 2022 as the scam-demic continues, according to the latest online fraud analysis published by LexisNexis Risk Solutions.

Around 36 million human-initiated fraud attacks were confirmed in the UK last year, a rise of 92% from the previous year. Globally the rate of growth was slower, at 56%.

The data also shows 352 million automated bot attacks on UK targets last year, an increase of 81% on the previous year. This means around 2% of all online transactions in the UK was a bot attack.

A bot attack is a large-scale automated cyber attack using sophisticated algorithms and automated scripts. Their objective can vary from disrupting an organisation’s website to phishing and smishing attacks designed to steal data. Recent bot attacks have been focussed on mass-testing people’s stolen login details.

These latest UK fraud figures are the result of analysing more than the 15.8 billion UK transactions processed by the LexisNexis® Digital Identity Network.

The figures represent good news for the UK financial services sector, showing that, despite rising fraud volumes, the UK attack rate – the number of successful attacks as a proportion of overall transaction volumes – is 0.2%, compared to a global rate of 1.3%.

The lower attack rate can be, in part, attributed to the UK’s advanced financial services market that invests billions per year on sophisticated tech-based fraud prevention solutions. High levels of mobile and app-based online banking service adoption is also helping reduce successful fraud attempts on UK customers.

Almost 9 in 10 (88%) UK financial services transactions are processed on mobile, with 89% of those occurring on apps. 

Three types of fraud stood out in the UK analysis. Scams were the dominant type, accounting for two in five fraud attacks (38.2%), with first-party fraud representing another third (29.3%) and third-party account takeover fraud, another 13%.

Responding to the analysis, fraud and Identity expert for LexisNexis Risk Solutions, UK & Ireland, Rob Woods commented, “These latest figures reveal a positive outlook for the UK’s ongoing fight against fraud. Despite rising overall volumes, this analysis shows that the UK’s highly-evolved and tech-enabled fraud prevention market is successfully mitigating fraud such as large scale 3rd party fraud, that is causing significant pain elsewhere in the world. Inevitably, other fraud typologies are emerging to fill this vacuum, including First Party Fraud – now a big problem in the UK. However, with continued adoption of AI-powered fraud analysis and shared intelligence, as well as more people accessing online services through secure mobile and app channels, the UK financial services sector is helping to significantly reduce the impact of fraud on its customers. As fraud attacks continued to increase during the past 18 months, financial institutions have responded well by focusing more on building trust with their loyal customer base, leading to higher levels of ‘trusted customer traffic’ that can be quickly authenticated and given access to online services, leaving more capacity for banks to focus on detecting and preventing malicious traffic.”

“However, whilst fraud attack rates are lower in the UK, they increased at a faster rate last year – at 44% compared to 20% globally – meaning that although the news is positive, businesses cannot afford to be complacent.”

Download the full UK analysis.

The LexisNexis Risk Solutions Cybercrime Report is based on cybercrime attacks detected by the Digital Identity Network platform. It processed 92 billion transactions in 2022, including common attack types such as new account creation, account login and payment fraud. It analyses transactions for legitimacy based on device identification, geolocation, history and behavioural analytics in near real-time, providing insight into global digital identities. Customers benefit from global risk views and custom-tuned policies. The report covers "high-risk" transactions scored by global customers. Digital Identity Network does not include transaction data from all countries in the world.

About LexisNexis Risk Solutions

LexisNexis® Risk Solutions harnesses the power of data, sophisticated analytics platforms and technology solutions to provide insights that help businesses across multiple industries and governmental entities reduce risk and improve decisions to benefit people around the globe. Headquartered in metro Atlanta, Georgia, we have offices throughout the world and are part of RELX (LSE: REL/NYSE: RELX), a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers. For more information, please visit. For more information, please visit LexisNexis Risk Solutions and RELX.

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