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Money stolen via online transfers increased fivefold in Tokyo

The number of special fraud cases involving stolen money sent through online banking services in Tokyo in 2023 increased about fivefold from the previous year to 106, investigative sources said on Saturday.

The number of such fraud cases reached 36 from January to March this year, a faster pace than in 2023, according to the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department.

Meanwhile, the total number of special fraud cases discovered in Tokyo last year totaled 2,918, down 9.3%.

Fraud involving money transfers through online banking services is difficult to detect and victims tend to send their money repeatedly, leading to greater damage, the sources said.

With many people using online banking on a daily basis, the number of fraud cases involving such services is expected to grow further, they say.

Of the 122 fraud cases in which more than ¥10 million each was stolen last year, 32 involved money transfers via online banking services, the second highest after 46 cases in which victims handed over cash to perpetrators.

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