Greater Use of Contactless Payments Increases Consumers’ Exposure to Financial Crime

  • Payments
  • 20.04.2021 01:35 pm
  • Value of credit and debit card transactions in the UK falls 17.5% over the last month1

Alex Robinson, Payment and Banking Expert at Featurespace, says: This latest data shows the pandemic has accelerated consumers’ use of contactless payments to make purchases.

“The fall in the value of credit and debit card transactions can be partly attributed to consumers reining in spending in January after the Christmas period and as a result of enforced closure of non-essential retail outlets."

“The accelerated shift towards contactless card payments was initially driven by fears over contracting coronavirus which triggered a shift in consumer behaviour towards favouring payments that helped reduce the risk of transmission. The proportion of debit and credit card purchases made through contactless payment means is likely to rise further once firms implement the necessary conditions to facilitate the higher £100 contactless payment limit."

“However, despite providing a more convenient means to make purchases, the high share of contactless payments may provide opportunities for fraudsters to conduct financial crime. Banks and payment providers need to be alive to this potential threat. Strengthening internal fraud and AML controls will reduce the likelihood of banks’ customers being the victim of financial crime.”


1UK Finance: Card Spending Update, January 2021

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