Debit – Credit Card Fraud Topped $32 Billion in 2021, $12 Billion was in the US

Credit/Debit card fraud hit $32.34 billion in 2021, with $11.9 billion of that coming from the United States, according to a report from Nilson. Worldwide, losses jumped by 14% in 2021.

Nilson states that the US accounted for 37% of worldwide losses to card fraud in 2021, even though it accounted for just 23% of card spending at merchants and cash transactions at ATMs. The report states that higher fraud losses in the US were due to a 25% increase in purchases made by credit cards after a 9% drop in 2020.

At the same time, card not present transactions increased, making purchases more vulnerable to fraud.

The $11.9 billion in fraud losses in the US in 2021 was up 18%. Fraud in the US was connected to card volume of $11.3 trillion. In 2020, the US total for fraud losses was $10.1 billion, tied to $9.4 trillion in total card volume.

In 2021, card fraud stood at 6.61¢ per $100 in total volume, an improvement from 2020, when the figure was 6.77¢ per $100.

David Robertson, Publisher of the Nilson Report, said that while fraud as a percentage of total volume declined, bad actors were able to steal 14% more, netting almost $4 billion more in 2021 than the previous year.

Losses to fraud are incurred by card issuers, merchants, processors of card payments from merchants, and processors of card transactions from ATMs.


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