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TransUnion Research Shows Digital Fraud Attempts from India Have Increased

TransUnion Research Shows Digital Fraud Attempts from India Have Increased 1

TransUnion’s (NYSE: TRU) latest quarterly analysis of global online fraud trends found that since the COVID-19 pandemic began, fraudsters are increasing their digital schemes against businesses.

TransUnion came to its conclusions about fraud against businesses based on intelligence from billions of transactions and more than 40,000 global websites and apps contained in its flagship identity proofing, risk-based authentication and fraud analytics solution suite – TransUnion TruValidate™. These websites and apps have traffic coming from all the countries across the globe including India.

It found the percent of suspected fraudulent digital transaction attempts[1] against businesses originating from India increased 28.32% when comparing the following two periods: Period #1 (March 11, 2019 and March 10, 2020); Period #2 (March 11, 2020 – when the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a global pandemic – and March 10, 2021).

 “Fraudsters are always looking to take advantage of significant world events. The COVID-19 pandemic and its corresponding rapid digital acceleration brought about by stay at home orders is a global event unrivaled in the online age,” said Mr. Shaleen Srivastava, executive vice president and head of Fraud Solutions at TransUnion in India. “By analyzing billions of transactions globally we screened for fraud indicators over the past year, it has become clear that the war against the virus has also brought about a war against digital fraud.”

In India across industries, TransUnion found that highest percent of suspected digital fraudulent transactions originated from following cities 1) Mumbai 2) Delhi and 3) Chennai.

Examining Fraud Types and Their Impact on Industries

TransUnion analyzed the below industries for a change in the percent of suspected digital fraud attempts against them coming from across the globe, comparing the periods of March 11, 2019-March 10, 2020 and March 11, 2020-March 10, 2021.

Suspected Digital Fraud Attempt Rate Post-Pandemic Declaration

IndustrySuspected fraud change coming from IndiaGlobal suspected fraud change for industryTop type of fraud globally
Logistics224.13%4.87% Shipping Fraud 
Telecommunications200.47%57.52% Credit Card Fraud
Financial Services89.49%57.49% Identity Theft
Communities (online dating, forums, etc.)10.75%-11.10% Profile Misrepresentation
  Insurance-6.66%32.52% Ghost Broking
Gaming-13.00%48.40% Gold Farming
Retail-22.37%38.71% Promotion Abuse
Travel & Leisure-45.17%29.68% Credit Card Fraud

Results showed a significant increase in attempted digital fraud originating from India against logistics companies. The level more than trebled (up 224%) and has been a significant development during COVID-19 times. With more people shopping online during the pandemic, goods are having to be shipped and fraudsters know this so are targeting either redirecting genuine orders or alternatively placing fraudulent orders with compromised consumer accounts to genuine customer addresses, and then redirecting them once shipped.


[1] The percent or rate of suspected fraudulent digital transaction attempts are those that TransUnion’s customers either denied or reviewed due to fraudulent indicators compared to all transactions it assessed for fraud.

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