Consumers awareness raising on non-cash payment fraud
Consumers awareness raising on non-cash payment fraud

Research studies

Sociological representative survey of public opinion.

The survey aimed at finding out whether consumers are aware of the threats they are exposed to when making non-cash payments and whether they are informed about their rights and obligations as well as what measures they take in order to protect their personal information.

1009 respondents all over Lithuania were surveyed during the survey.

The sociological survey has shown that the threats most often identified by the respondents were identity theft (72 per cent), e-mails which phish out passwords (70 per cent), spam (67 per cent) and computer viruses (76 per cent) which aim at finding out important personal information.

The instances of abuse of personal data when an unauthorised user took advantage of another person's payment card, withdrew money from an ATM, took a loan in the name of another person were encountered by consumers especially rarely (up to 2 per cent).
In order to protect their personal information, consumers restrict the disclosure of their personal data on the internet (52 per cent), use anti-virus programmes, firewalls (50 per cent), while 34 per cent noted that they even avoid making payments online. Only 8 per cent replied that they did not use any measures to protect their personal information, because they had no knowledge about it.

Taking into consideration the fact that the disclosure of personal data on the internet provides opportunities for fraudsters to take advantage of them when payments are made, the survey investigated how consumers understand personal data. The respondents most often attributed the personal ID number (95 per cent), the name and surname (77 per cent), the data of payment cards (59 per cent) to personal data, while the e-mail address was considered as personal data only by 18 per cent. The survey has shown that consumers have too little information about the content and scope of the concept personal data. Therefore, it is likely that consumers can disclose their personal data, which will be used for criminal purposes.

The majority of the respondents (78 per cent) do not use their payment cards to pay for goods or services online. One third (33 per cent) of the respondents feel insecure when they make payments online, nevertheless, most of them (76 per cent) do not verify the website security before making payment.

Consumers are uncertain if they have the right to recover their money after the loss of their payment card, if another person uses it. 42 per cent of the respondents tend to think that recovering the money without court is impossible in such a case.

Investigation of consumer complaints.

The Survey aims at analysing consumer complaints at state authorities with competences related to consumer protection, as well as statistical data on crimes under Articles 214 and 215 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Lithuania.

The survey covered the years 2008-2010. It has been found out that the number of complaints in the area of financial services was growing in 2008-2009 and decreased in 2010. The complaints filed by consumers regarding potential fraud reflect the general trends of complaints regarding financial services. The majority of consumer complaints about potential fraud were not satisfied. It was ascertained the consumers were careless taking care of their payment instruments.

According to the data of the Police Department, there were 941 criminal offences registered under Article 214 of the Criminal Code (Production of a Counterfeit Electronic Means of Payment, Forgery of a Genuine Electronic Means of Payment or Unlawful Possession of an Electronic Means of Payment or Data Thereof) in 2008, 881 in 2009 and 1004 in 2010.

The trends of registered criminal offences under Article 215 of the Criminal Code (Unlawful Use of an Electronic Means of Payment or Data Thereof) are as follows: 1274 cases were identified in 2008, 2376 cases in 2009 and 2233 cases in 201.

It should be noted that there is no precise statistics on crime to record the cases of fraud while making non-cash payments. The statistics gathered at present reflects only registered offences under Articles 214 and 215 of the Criminal Code and such criminal acts may be redefined as other criminal offences.