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Retail Fraud Volume and Cost Up Sharply in 2018

July 31, 2018

Illustration by kreatikar via Pixabay
Illustration by kreatikar via Pixabay

ATLANTA — LexisNexis Risk Solutions released its comprehensive 2018 True Cost of Fraud report for the retail sector. Findings show fraud is escalating at an unprecedented pace in an industry already operating on very thin margins.

The LexisNexis Fraud Multiplier, which measures the cost for each dollar of fraud loss, found that this year, every dollar of fraud costs merchants $2.94, up from $2.77 a year ago, a 6% increase. The report also found the volume of successful and thwarted fraudulent attempts rising steeply at the companies surveyed — from a monthly average of 238 to 306 successful fraudulent transactions, year-on-year, and from 257 to 313 prevented fraudulent transactions.

Mobile commerce continues to be the sector most susceptible to fraud, particularly with identity fraud. Mid- to large-size mobile commerce merchants that sell digital goods see 39% of the fraud losses from identity theft, including synthetic identities. Though these merchants appear to have shown signs of investing in fraud prevention solutions in the past year, many still struggle with identity fraud. This is likely due to the types of solutions that these merchants are implementing.

“The hotly competitive retail landscape means merchants must meet customer expectations for convenience and continually drive business growth,” said Kimberly Sutherland, senior director, fraud and identity management strategy, LexisNexis Risk Solutions. “However, these key drivers also have increased risk for identity-related fraud, especially with the rise of synthetic identities and the volume of botnet orders. Therefore, it’s crucial for retailers to not just invest in a large number of fraud prevention solutions, but the right combination and layering of the solutions to defend against different threats.”

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