Protected by Design: New fraud protections for people at risk

Protected by Design, a new report by Demos supported by Cifas, has found evidence that adults with cognitive impairments are more likely to be targeted of victimised by fraudsters.

Based on analysis of the Financial Lives survey, the report finds that people with a capacity limiting health condition such as acquired brain injury, learning disabilities or dementia, are far more likely to be harmed by fraud than the ‘average consumer’. The analysis found:

  • People with a limiting health condition were almost twice as likely to have their account or debit card used without their permission. In the past 12 months alone, this happened to 5% of people with these conditions, compared to 3% for the rest of the population.
  • 5% of people with a health condition said that they have had money taken from their account in a way which involved their personal details being used without permission. Only 2% of the rest of the respondents said yes to this question.
  • 6% of people with a health condition said they received a request to confirm personal details and 3% of people said they received a request to transfer money through their account. Only 3% of people without these health conditions said they received a request to confirm their personal details and only 1% said they received a request to transfer money through their account.

The report also details the increased reliance of people with cognitive impairments on third parties such as friends, family and carers to help them deal with their finances. 27% of people with a health condition said they shared their personal details such as PIN or online account log-in details with someone they trust in the last 12 months, compared to 19% of people without these health conditions.

The report recommends a number of measures that could better protect at risk people from fraud and financial abuse.

Read the full report here.