Anti-fraud group to quiz 1,400 firms for survey

Juliet Dennis

Travel companies are being urged to take part in the industry’s biggest fraud survey and data analysis. Te study aims to analyse

information from more than 1,000 UK and Irish travel companies to produce new guidance for the trade – and potentially uncover criminal gangs operating in the sector. It will be the first time such data

has been channelled through the Fraud Intelligence Network (Fin), set up last year by travel anti-fraud group Prevention of Fraud in Travel (Profit). Te group issued the appeal aſter

teaming up with the City of London Police and the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau to identify new methods being used by criminals and the changing nature of the threat posed to travel businesses. Chairman Barry Gooch is inviting any interested companies to take

The more

organisations that take part, [the more] free advice we will be able to provide to the industry

part. He said: “It’s going to be the biggest sample size to date. Te 2012 survey was about 80 organisations; we expect about 1,400 this time. “Te more organisations that take

part, the more useful the results, and [the more] free advice we will be able to provide to the industry.” Te survey will assess if firms

have seen an increase in fraud and the methods they use to detect fraud. Participants will receive free limited access to Fin for taking part. Fin can flag any reoccurring names or card details to help

HAYS OF SUNSHINE: John Hays hosted 580 agents at Hays Travel’s largest summer garden party on Sunday. The annual event included a barbecue, hog roast and entertainment from cover band Foxx, which sang Oasis’ Wonderwall to founder Hays ahead of his 70th birthday. Hays, who has been hosting garden parties for staff for 30 years, said: “It started off as a barbecue for a handful of staff to say thank you. I felt emotional when the band surprised me. It was wonderful seeing all the amazing people who I work with singing and swaying. I feel very lucky and very proud.”

6 11 JULY 2019

identify criminals operating across numerous companies. About 17 travel organisations feed

fraud data into Fin, which is used by City of London Police fraud specialists to detect criminals. Gooch said: “Fraud data from the

last few years goes into Fin; we then have 1,000-plus data sets to analyse. We could identify new organised crime groups. What you see [as a result] is a reduction in the types of fraud we identify.” Results are combined with fraud

data from official sources, turned into specific advice on counter measures, shared with participants, trading standards and police, and published on Profit’s website for organisations to use free of charge. Data from the new study will be processed at the end of July and a

report produced later this year. i To take part in the study, visit:

BA data breach fine is ‘wake-up call’ for all firms

British Airways’ £183 million data breach fine is a wake-up call to travel companies to tighten cybersecurity measures, according to anti-fraud group Prevention of Fraud in Travel (Profit). Te proposed penalty

relates to two data breaches between September 6 and October 25, 2018, affecting about 500,000 customers’ details. Profit chairman Barry Gooch

said the case “should make every company owner take notice that they need to take cybersecurity seriously”. He added: “Every company

needs to make sure it is taking every appropriate step to protect personal data or, as can be seen from this case, the consequences can be severe.” Te penalty notice from the UK

Information Commissioner’s Office is the biggest ever issued under the UK Data Protection Act. BA plans to appeal.

i For free cybersecurity advice, email

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