By Gemma Roberts
During the first half of 2010 the number of fraudulent applications to financial services firms increased by a third, research has revealed.
During the six months to the end of June, around 19 fraudulent applications for credit or financial services were found in every 10,000 applications. This was a 33 per cent increase from the second half of last year.
Experian revealed the jump was due to people attempting to cheat their way around the new stricter lending criteria used by building societies and banks.
The group said so-called first party fraud - under which people attempt to hide an adverse credit history or lie about their employment status to secure credit or other financial products that would not otherwise be available to them - overtook third party fraud during the second quarter of the year.
Car finance saw the biggest increase in attempted fraud during the first half, with the number of fraudulent applications that were detected jumping by 35 per cent, to reach their highest level since early 2006.
The group said 34 out of every 10,000 applications for motor finance were found to be fraudulent during the six months to the end of June, with the level soaring to 47 out of every 10,000 in the second quarter. Nearly two-thirds of attempted car-finance fraud involved people trying to conceal adverse credit histories in their applications, while nearly one in five involved inaccurate employment details.