Automotive finance fraud rose by more than a third in the first half of 2010, according to credit experts Experian.
The second quarter of this year was the worst, with 47 fraudulent applications for every 10,000 compared with 25 in the same period last year.
Most people – 64 percent – were trying to conceal poor credit history in their applications, whilst 20 percent lied about their employment history.
The period from April to June saw such first party fraud, where individuals attempt to conceal or amend their own details, overtake third party fraud committed by criminals against unrelated people, as the most common form of the crime.
Director of fraud and identity solutions at Experian, Nick Mothershaw, said: "The growth in this area can be partly explained by the high value assets on offer that can easily be converted into cash, but the complexity of the sales process is also a factor. For fraudsters, this makes it a comparatively easier target than other finance providers."
These are the highest levels recorded for three years.