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Financial regulator to scan 100,000 sites a day in online fraud crackdown 

FCA cyber fraud

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is launching a new data-driven anti-fraud strategy to crack down on rising online fraud.

The UK’s financial regulator said it will be investing heavily in its use of data in 2022/23, with a significant increase in the recruitment of roles in artificial intelligence, analytics, cloud engineering and data science.

The watchdog has said its new data strategy will give it the capability to scan approximately 100,000 websites a day in an effort to crack down on online fraud.

“Better use of data means we can be more proactive and find and stop harm faster,” said Jessica Rusu a chief data, information, and intelligence officer at the FCA.

“We are continuing to improve our data, technology, and capabilities to act decisively in consumers’ interests while making it easier for firms to report to us.”

The FCA has been ramping up its online fraud measures in recent years, having added 1,966 potential scams to its consumer warning list between May 2021 and April 2022, over a third more than during the same period the previous year.

The FCA has also flagged the Russian invasion of Ukraine as a cause for an increase in online financial crime and has since “developed and implemented a sanctions screening tool to support the monitoring of the effectiveness of a firm’s controls in identifying organisations or individuals that have been sanctioned”.

Earlier this month the regulator wrote to 3,500 executives in the financial sector, including all buy now pay later providers operating in the UK, encouraging consumer protection during the cost of living crisis.

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