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Retailers to consult former cyber criminal on e-retail fraud

Warwick Ashford

UK retailers are to consult former cyber criminal Tony Sales on how to prevent fraud carried out against their online operations.

Sales, who committed fraud totalling an estimated £30m, is to meet around 250 retailers for one-to-one consultations at the Internet Retailing Expo 2013 on 20 and 21 March at the NEC in Birmingham.

Sales is also to give a 45-minute closed-door presentation on beating e-payment fraud.

“The demand for smart ways to outwit the fraud network among the retail industry is at an all-time high,” said Sales.

The move of businesses online has increased the opportunities for fraudsters, said Sales, who claims it is now easier than ever to commit fraud online from one-off fraud to mass automated attacks.

“I look forward to meeting the UK’s top e-commerce business people at the retailers and setting them straight on the risks,” he said.

Internet Retailing editor-in-chief Ian Jindal, said: “Beneath the celebrity of Tony’s previous crimes there is a serious opportunity for retailers to get inside the mind of a fraudster and learn his techniques.”

In January, research found that for a second year running, retailers were prioritising investment in e-commerce platforms above in-store IT systems as businesses prepare for more high street store closures with the move to online.

The IT in Retail report from consultancy Martec, analysed the systems strategies of 150 top UK retailers, representing sales of £203bn and 70% of the UK market.

The study showed that while e-commerce had grown 16%, overall sales rose by just 1.5%, suggesting a cannibalisation of high street sales.

Brian Hume, managing director of Martec, estimated that this equates to the closure of 40 stores per week, with that figure expected to rise significantly as more people shop online.


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