UK payments watchdog calls for the publication of fraud data

The Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) has announced its latest plans to fight fraud and protect victims of Authorised Push Payment (APP) scams.

According to UK Finance, which represents nearly 300 UK financial services firms, the latest figures show that in the first half of the year £355 million was lost to APP scams.

The PSR said that more action must be taken by the financial sector and across the digital ecosystem, including social media companies.

In its latest consultation, the regulator proposes publication of fraud data by banks. This requires that banks and building societies in the 12 largest banking groups in the country and two largest in Northern Ireland must publish data on their performance in relation to APP scams, on reimbursement levels for victims, and which banks and building societies’ accounts are being used to receive the fraudulent funds.

The authority has also called on the industry to improve scam prevention through intelligence sharing to enhance detection and prevention of these kinds of scams.

In addition, the PSR said it must be established how to best to make reimbursement mandatory to victims of APP scams once legislative changes have been made.

The organisation added that it intends to require the publication of fraud data and is “keen to work with firms” to identify the most appropriate ways this will be collected before the requirement comes into effect.

“Push payment fraud is posing an escalating risk to UK customers, with increasingly sophisticated scams that can be detrimental to people’s lives,” said John Glen, economic secretary to the Treasury. “The Government’s position is that liability and reimbursement requirements on firms need to be clear so that customers are suitably protected. It is welcome that the Payment Systems Regulator is consulting on measures to that end, and to help prevent these scams from happening in the first place.

"The Government will also legislate to address any barriers to regulatory action at the earliest opportunity.”

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