This is a trade facing website. Visit the ACT's consumer site thecyclingexperts.co.uk for information and advice on cycling and find your local independent cycle retailer.

Search News

Results: 1-10 of 10


2 Mar 2022

The FCA was concerned there was a potential risk of harm to consumers as a result of the way Clearpay, Klarna, Laybuy and Openpay's T&Css were drafted.

17 Feb 2022

Buy Now, Pay Later purchases are set to appear on credit reports for the first time, meaning lenders will be able to see the borrowing

23 Nov 2021

Improperly regulatedBuy Now Pay Later services aren't just growing in popularity among consumers, they're also proving to be a hit with criminals.

8 Nov 2021

As trendy Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) services continue to grow in popularity across the UK, a charity has warned that using these non-regulated services can be like "slipping into quicksand"....

20 Sep 2020

The ACT's new infographic that helps you to know what to look out for when choosing the right finance provider

12 Nov 2019

A recent story published on BBC news shows how a popular finance provider misled a 21-year-old student which ended in...

24 Oct 2019

Halfords have recently changed finance provider resulting in, what many might consider, undesirable implications for UK consumers

3 Apr 2019

Following an increase of incoming calls querying finance providers in the cycles market, the ACT are publishing a mini-series to answer the trade's questions.

26 Mar 2019

Following an increase of incoming calls querying finance providers in the cycles market, the ACT are publishing a mini-series to answer the trade's questions.

20 Mar 2019

Following an increase of incoming calls querying finance providers in the cycles market, the ACT are publishing a mini-series to answer the trade's questions

Back to news menu

How fraudsters are exploiting customers using popular BNPL service providers

Posted on in Business News ,Brands & Products News , Cycles News

Improperly e-commerceregulated Buy Now Pay Later services aren't just growing in popularity among consumers, they're also proving to be a hit with criminals.

Retail finance, when used correctly, is an advantageous payment option for both retailers and consumers and it should continue to be so. It is specifically the BNPL providers performing soft credit checks where fraudulent activity is on the rise, which include Klarna, Afterpay and Affirm, according to fraud experts.

BNPL products are becoming increasingly popular among Gen Z's and Millennials, they are offered widely online by fashion retailers whereby they allow shoppers to split payments at checkouts or pay 30 days later interest-free. They've become massively popular in the U.S. and Europe, and generated almost $100 billion in transactions globally in 2020 alone.

Criminal gangs are exploiting weaknesses in the application process for BNPL loans, experts say, using clever tactics to slip through undetected and steal items such as bicycles, booze and video game consoles.

Martin Rehak, CEO and co-founder of Czech fraud detection start-up Resistant AI said that one of the vulnerabilities is BNPL firms' reliance on data for approving new clients. Many companies in the industry don't conduct formal credit checks, instead using internal algorithms to determine creditworthiness based on the information they have available to them.

Rehak said many scammers are stealing people's identities or taking over their accounts to evade detection, making unsuspecting victims foot the bill. He declined to name any specific companies being targeted, however, saying Resistant AI counts a number of BNPL businesses as clients.

Warnings of BNPL fraud are particularly timely as Black Friday kicks off the critical holiday shopping season next week. "There's going to be a huge amount of fraud hidden in there because they always lower their security checks during those events because they don't want it to impact sales," said Kevin Gosschalk, founder and CEO of fraud-prevention start-up Arkose Labs.

Consistent campaigning has now led to the UK Treasury launching a consultation into bringing the sector under regulation. The Treasury said that the consultation "sets out policy options to achieve a proportionate approach to regulation of BNPL".

Martin Lewis, founder of MoneySavingExpert.com, summarises the issue by saying retail finance "isn't automatically a bad thing to do" and that when done right it "can be a useful tool to help people spread costs."

The ACT and ActSmart, members of the Independent Retailers Confederation (IRC), has previously raised concerns about the improper regulation of BNPL providers such as Klarna, Openpay and LayBuy and the risks that they bring to potential customers.

Some debt charities argue that it is the retailer's responsibility to educate their customers of the risks being undertaken when committing to any BNPL payments. With a retailer's reputation at stake, as well as the wellbeing of their customers, it is imperative that businesses find a finance provider that they can trust and that is correctly regulated by the FCA.

The ACT have created a mini-series - Choosing the right finance provider, avoid the pitfalls - which assists retailers by highlighting what to look out for when choosing the right finance provider for you.

 

Train your staff to deliver finance effectively

Retail Finance Training, brought to you by Indie Retail Training, is a distance learning course ensuring your business sells using finance effectively and compliantly.

This course is designed for all owners and employees in a business that either currently, or plans to, offer retail finance as a payment method.

The course will teach you how to legally promote and use retail finance in-store, online and in all other forms of media. As well as covering the legal details this course also aims to make sure you maximise each sale using retail finance.

You can sign up and access a demo of the training site for FREE: https://demo.indieretail.training.

For the full course, ACT members receive preferential pricing with up to 50% off. Find out more about the full course.

 

Back to news menu

Useful links

If you have any other queries please contact us.