Businesswoman who lost thousands to scammers calls for more online fraud protection - The Rugby Observer

Businesswoman who lost thousands to scammers calls for more online fraud protection

Andy Morris 16th Jan, 2018   0

A BUSINESSWOMAN who was left over £12,500 out-of-pocket by online scammers has called for more protection to stop them ‘destroying small businesses’.

Anne Gleed, who runs her own interior design business in Easenhall, lost out to fraudsters last August when they hacked her email account and posed as Mercedes Benz, from whom she was in the process of buying a company van.

She paid the swindlers £12,540 when they provided her with false bank details and still has not had her money recovered, despite reporting the con to her and the fraudsters’ banks on the day it happened.

Anne, who runs Anne Gleed Interiors, said the experience had made her much more wary.

She said: “It was very upsetting, at such an exciting time for me to be able to purchase a new vehicle with the profits from all my hard work and perseverance. It effects the way I run my business now.”

She added the banks had no interest in refunding her money or finding out where it had gone.

She said: “The fact that people like myself are not entitled to protection from the banks against fraudsters is completely out of date in an age where 100 per cent of my business and personal banking is done using a computer.

“They have the details of the person who opened the account but it’s not looked into in any way. These people aren’t held accountable for their actions even thought their identity is known. It’s absolutely crazy.

“Measures should be put in place to stop these people from destroying small business such as my own.”

She wrote to Rugby MP Mark Pawsey, who cited her case in Parliament during Home Office Questions.

He asked Security Minister Ben Wallace how such frauds – known as ‘authorised push payment’ scams – could be reduced.

The minister confirmed the Payment Systems Regulator, Joint Fraud Taskforce and the National Crime Agency were investing in new technology to speed up the process of recovering money.

Mr Pawsey said: “I was very concerned to hear about the fraud that Ms Gleed has fallen victim to and it is clear that these types of sophisticated criminal acts are becoming increasingly common.

“Alongside the investment to which the Minister referred, I am pleased that the Payment Systems Regulator is consulting on ways to mitigate the impact of these scams and ensure that customers like Ms Gleed are protected.

“I would urge anyone using online banking to ensure they always confirm where they are sending their money, either by sending a small payment first or calling the payee rather than relying on email correspondence.”


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