Saturday 19 October 2019

Half of youngsters looking for cash have been targeted by fraudsters

Only a third of those who lost money or had their personal data compromised realised within 24 hours what had happened. Stock Image
Only a third of those who lost money or had their personal data compromised realised within 24 hours what had happened. Stock Image
Charlie Weston

Charlie Weston

Half of young adults report they have been the target of attempted fraud on a monthly basis.

Some report scam attempts on a weekly basis, according to a survey commissioned by FraudSmart, of the Irish Banking and Payments Federation.

Among 18- to 24-year-olds who said they had money stolen, the average lost to fraud scams amounted to €228, enough to buy groceries for a month or pay for a bigger ticket item such as entry to Electric Picnic. They have been stung into transferring cash and handing over bank card details often as a result to responding to jobs adverts, particularly for summer work.

Only a third of those who lost money or had their personal data compromised realised within 24 hours what had happened.

With a further 30pc, it took a week. One in five was unaware of the fraud for more than a year.

When asked how someone had tried to get bank or personal details in the past year for fraudulent purposes, almost one-third of those surveyed said they were targeted via email. Others were duped by mobile phone, with text messages also being used.

FraudSmart has urged young people to be vigilant, particularly during the summer months when looking for seasonal and temporary work.

Likely

The survey revealed one in 10 targeted by fraudsters had been contacted through classified advertisements.

Young adults were almost three times more likely to tell family and friends than to report the incident to their bank or gardaí.

However, more than one in five said they did nothing or decided not to tell anyone because they were "so used to scams happening" or "felt foolish for being targeted".

Niamh Davenport of Fraud-Smart said the culprits know classified ads attract young people looking for part-time and casual work in exchange for cash, especially to earn extra money for travel, entertainment and living costs.

"If the offer looks too good to be true, it probably is," she said. "We're urging young people to challenge what they see and check with someone they trust before signing up for more than they bargained for."

Irish Independent

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