Suspected Digital Holiday Shopping Fraud From South Africa Increases 4.2% Compared to Last Year
TransUnion analyses early holiday e-commerce fraud attempt rates
TransUnion released new findings today around global e-commerce fraud trends that occurred during the busiest period of the 2021 holiday shopping season. The analysis found 17.5% of all global e-commerce transactions – and 7.8% of South African transactions – between November 25-29, were potentially fraudulent.
Globally, this is 3.7% higher than the same five-day period leading up to Cyber Monday last year. For transactions originating from South Africa, the percentage increased by 4.2% when comparing those same periods. These findings are based on intelligence from billions of transactions contained in TransUnion’s fraud analytics solution suite, TruValidate™.
The analysis also found the top two reasons potentially fraudulent e-commerce transactions globally were identified during this timeframe were the number of accounts per device (which triggers when a device accesses a certain number of accounts during the period), and evidence of previous fraud on the account or device.
Percentage of Suspected Fraudulent E-Commerce Transactions during Holiday Shopping Weekend
“The holiday shopping season is a popular time for bad actors to engage in fraudulent activity globally, particularly in the e-commerce and retail industry,” said Hans Zachar, vice president and head of solutions for TransUnion Africa. “Online shopping is the new norm for the majority of consumers and that trend has been further accelerated due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Consumers want to shop with online retailers that not only provide a seamless user experience, but also take consumer security and privacy seriously. It is imperative that those businesses equip themselves with the proper tools to detect fraud at the first warning sign without inhabiting the consumer journey.”
In addition to the above findings, TransUnion released the following fraud analysis for South Africa regarding the percentage of suspected fraudulent e-commerce transactions during the start of the holiday shopping season and entire year from 2019 to 2021.
- 7.8% from November 25-29, 2021; 16.6% so far in 2021
- 7.5% from November 26-30, 2020; 17.8% in 2020
- 7.1% from November 28 – December 2, 2019; 5.4% in 2019
Percentage of Suspected E-Commerce Fraud – Holiday Season vs. Overall
Spike in suspected fraud attempts as consumers express concern
The spike of suspected digital fraud during the traditional busiest days of the holiday shopping season occurred as consumers express concern about being victimised. TransUnion’s Q3 2021 Consumer Pulse Study found that two in five (40.0%) South African consumers were aware of being targeted by a digital fraud attempt in the past three months.
TransUnion monitors digital fraud attempts reported by businesses in varied industries such as gambling, gaming, financial services, healthcare, insurance, retail, and travel and leisure, among others. The conclusions are based on intelligence from billions of transactions and more than 40,000 websites and apps contained in its flagship identity proofing, risk-based authentication and fraud analytics solution suite, TransUnion TruValidate™.
To find out how this data varies by select countries, how mobile is playing a large part in digital holiday fraud, what days during the holiday shopping season are most popular for fraud and more, TransUnion’s holiday fraud trends can be found here.
 The percent of suspected digital fraud attempts are those that TruValidate customers either denied or reviewed due to fraudulent indicators compared to all transactions it assessed for fraud.