Helpdesk fraud is increasing rapidly in the Netherlands. Netherlands residents suffered 47.6 million euros in damage from this type of fraud last year, up from 26.2 million euros in 2020, the Dutch association of banks NVB reported. It is now by far the most popular form of fraud in the Netherlands.
In helpdesk fraud, the scammer calls or texts victims pretending to be from their bank. They say the victim’s account is no longer safe and convince the victim to transfer their balance into a “safe account.” They often also manage to convince victims to give up their debit cards.
“The bank will never ask customers on the phone or in a text message to transfer money to other accounts, even in an emergency. So our message to customers is: hang up, click away, and call your bank,” the NVB said.
Other types of fraud decreased last year. Damages from phishing dropped from 12.8 million euros in 2020 to 10.8 million euros last year, damages from stolen debit cards fell from 5.8 million to 1.9 million, and credit card fraud from 3.7 million to 2.1 million euros. But due to the increase in help desk fraud, the total fraud damage increased from 48.7 million euros to 62.5 million euros last year.