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Payment card fraud hits €24 million in 2020 with majority of debit and credit card fraud taking place online

Latest figures show over a quarter of a million fraudulent debit and credit card transactions.

Consumers warned to be extra vigilant with Black Friday shopping and pre-Christmas rush well underway.

Tuesday 23rd November 2021 – Banking & Payments Federation Ireland (BPFI) today published the latest debit and credit card fraud losses which amounted to €24.1 million in 2020 with over 275,000 fraudulent debit and credit card transactions. The figures show card fraud losses rose by 9% in 2020 with the vast majority of this (96%) accounted for by online card fraud which rose by 21% to €23.1 million.

With shopping for Black Friday deals and the pre-Christmas rush already well underway, FraudSMART, BPFI’s fraud awareness initiative, is warning all consumers to be extra vigilant now and over the coming weeks to prevent themselves falling victim to fraud while shopping online.

Speaking about the latest figures and how consumers can stay safe when shopping online this Christmas, Brian Hayes, Chief Executive BPFI said: “With more of us shopping online then ever before due to the ongoing pandemic, our latest card fraud figures are a stark reminder that consumers need to be on high alert during what is the busiest online shopping periods of the year. With concerns around rising Covid figures drawing ever more consumers online, fraudsters are again stepping up their efforts to take advantage of this increase in online shopping.

The banking industry is working hard to protect customers through better detection and fraud monitoring systems which are in place, however, we must all must remain vigilant against scams. With a jump of 21% in online card fraud losses in 2020 and over 275,000 fraudulent debit and credit card transactions we are calling on all consumer to pause for thought before parting with their money or information and familiarise themselves with some the very straight forward steps they can take to protect themselves from falling victim.

Consumers can find a wealth of other advice on how to avoid fraud by visiting

Top Tips for Shopping Safely Online:

  • Use secure websites. The website address should be ‘https’ before the purchase is made, indicating a secure connection
  • Use sites where a padlock symbol is shown beside the website address
  • Do not under any circumstances use public Wi-Fi when making payments – switch to 3G/4G on your phone if necessary
  • Independently visit the website of the online sales company as opposed to clicking on social media or pop-up adverts
  • Be cautious about claiming outrageous offers – if it sounds too good to be true it probably is
  • Stick to well-known websites or websites that you are familiar with or websites associated with high street retail outlets

Consumers can find a wealth of other advice on how to avoid fraud by visiting


For further information contact: Jillian Heffernan, Head of Communications, 087 9016880 or

About FraudSMART: FraudSMART is a fraud awareness initiative developed by Banking & Payments Federation Ireland (BPFI) in conjunction with the following member banks, Allied Irish Bank plc, Bank of Ireland, KBC Bank Ireland, PermanentTSB, Ulster Bank, An Post and Barclays. The programme aims to raise consumer and business awareness of the latest financial fraud activity and trends and provide simple and impartial advice on how best they can protect themselves and their resources.

About BPFI: Banking & Payments Federation Ireland (BPFI) represents the banking, payments and fintech sector in Ireland.  Together with its affiliates, the Federation of International Banks in Ireland and the Fintech & Payments Association of Ireland, BPFI has over 100 member institutions and associates, including licensed domestic and foreign banks and institutions operating in the financial marketplace here.