Record numbers of home movers fall victim to ‘previous occupier’ fraud | UK | News

In World

There were 15,851 “previous occupier” last year – up 5.6 per cent on 15,005 reported in 2015.

The scam now accounts for 9.2 per cent of all identity fraud in the UK.

It occurs when the new resident obtains the former occupier’s personal details to fraudulently apply for loans and credit cards.

Now Royal Mail and identity security firm Cifas are urging people to take much greater care when moving.

They advise shredding financial paperwork before binning it, and updating your new address with companies which send you post.

They also suggest redirection post for at least six months to a year.

Simon Dukes, chief executive at Cifas, said: “Keeping track of your mail when you change address is a simple step that will make a fraudster’s job much more difficult and reduce the opportunities for them to exploit your personal data.”

Some 47 per cent of movers do not take out a post re-direction service when they move, according to Royal Mail.

A spokesman said: “Whether you are renting or buying, taking out a re-direction service reduces the chances of your personal details falling into the wrong hands.”