The share of US cardholders who have seen fraudulent charges on their credit or debit cards increased to 65 percent in 2022, up from 58 percent in 2021, according to a survey conducted by Security.org. 150 million American consumers have now experienced card fraud firsthand, 21 percent of all US cardholders have experienced card fraud twice or more.
The silver lining is that the fraudulent charge is often relatively small at less than $50 one-third of the time, implying a meaningful degree of carding or card testing activity that is being caught by the cardholder. Fraudulent charges between $50 and $99 and between $100 and $299 were the next most targeted amounts, at 22 and 24 percent, respectively. Just 6 percent of fraudulent charges were greater than $1,000 while 15 percent were between $300 and $999.
The median fraudulent charge was $79 in 2022, a 27 percent increase from $62 in 2021. Fewer than 10 percent of victim cardholders reported the incident to police, but were much more likely to do so if the loss was large. The median card fraud loss reported to police was $400.
It is important for cardholders, and their issuing bank, to report card fraud incidences promptly, and fraud alerts played a major role in expediting the recognition and reporting of these events. Nearly 84 percent of US cardholders who were signed up for fraud alerts noticed illegitimate charges on their account within minutes or hours, with just 17 percent taking a day or longer to become aware of the fraudulent charge. For consumers without fraud alerts, however, just 34 percent were aware of the fraudulent charges within hours or less, while approximately two-thirds took days or longer to notice the fraudulent charge.
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