UK Businesses Losing Hundreds of Millions to Cybercrime

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The British Retail Consortium (BRC) recently published the results of its first e-crime study, which found that the total cost of cybercrime to retailers in 2011-12 was at least £205.4 million.

"The study estimates that retailers lost 0.75 percent of all sales in 2011-12, meaning that £205.4 million was lost from sales of £28 billion," The Register reports. "In contrast retail crime as a whole amounted to 0.36 percent of the £303 billion value of all retail sales, according to the BRC."

"The most expensive form of e-crime for retailers was personal identification related frauds, producing £20 million of losses between 2011-12," writes TechEye's Matthew Finnegan. "Card fraud caused £15 million losses to retailers over the same period, while refund frauds were responsible for £1.2 million of losses."

"BRC said retailers also lost £111.6 million to e-crime as a result of genuine business being rejected because of crime-prevention measures," Insider News reports. "For example, customers may be deterred from continuing with an online purchase by additional online security measures."

"The rapid growth of e-commerce in the UK shows it offers great benefits for customers but also new opportunities for criminals," BRC director general Stephen Robertson said in a statement. "Online retailing has the potential for huge future commercial expansion but government and police need to take e-crime more seriously if the sector is to maximise its contribution to national economic growth."