Financial fraud losses showed 8% fall in first half of 2017

The finance industry stopped more than £750 million of attempted fraud in the first half of 2017, figures from a trade body show.

The total represents more than two-thirds of attempted financial fraud, according to UK Finance.

It compares with £678.7 million in the first half of 2016.

UK Finance, which represents around 300 firms in the UK providing credit, banking and payment services, said that at £366.4 million, financial fraud losses between January and June were down 8% compared with the same period a year earlier.

The trade body said fraudsters are increasingly trying to use customers' compromised personal and financial information to carry out fraud.

Details are often stolen through online attacks, such as data hacks and malware, as well as through impersonation scams directly targeting customers.

A national awareness campaign, called Take Five to Stop Fraud, is encouraging people to remember the phrase "My money? My info? I don't think so" if someone asks for their personal details.

Katy Worobec, head of fraud and financial crime prevention, cyber and data sharing at UK Finance, said: "Next week our Take Five to Stop Fraud campaign in partnership with the Home Office kicks off to make sure customers know what to do to stay safe from the latest scams.

"Through the campaign we want to encourage all customers to remember to Take Five by saying: 'My money? My info? I don't think so'."

Security minister Ben Wallace said: "The Joint Fraud Taskforce sees Government, law enforcement and industry working together to tackle some of the toughest fraud issues in order to protect the public.

"The national Take Five campaign will raise further awareness of how people can take simple steps to protect themselves against scams."

Here are the campaign's top tips to fight against scams:

:: A genuine bank or organisation will never contact you asking for your PIN, full password or to move money to a safe account

:: Never give out personal or financial information. Always contact the company directly using a known email or phone number

:: Do not be tricked into giving a fraudster access to your details. Never automatically click on a link in an unexpected email or text

:: Always question uninvited approaches, in case it is a scam

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