Following the addition of new questions within the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW), the latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) study reveals 3.8 million fraud and two million computer misuse offences in the 12-month period leading up to March this year.
“This is the first time we’ve published official estimates of fraud and computer misuse from our victimisation survey,” stated John Flatley, crime statistics and analysis specialist at the ONS. “Together, these offences are similar in magnitude to the existing headline figures covering all other Crime Survey offences. However, it would be wrong to conclude that actual crime levels have doubled, since the CSEW didn’t previously cover these offences. These improvements to the Survey will help to measure the scale of the threat from such crimes, while also helping to shape the response.”
In the year studied, there was a 5% increase in the number of fraud offences recorded in England and Wales (up to 621,017 offences) compared with the previous year. This rise was owing to fraud offences referred by Cifas, which increased by 16% (up to 298,968) compared with the previous year.