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Early Holiday E-Commerce Fraud on the Rise

Suspected online retail fraud grows by two-fifths in Hong Kong.


With the 2020 global holiday shopping season underway, suspected digital fraud1 has increased 41%. An additional 20% of Hong Kong consumers have also been targets of digital fraud related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

TransUnion analysed online retail transactions between 11–30 Nov. and found the highest percentage of suspected fraudulent transactions in Hong Kong occurred on Cyber Monday (30 Nov.) and Black Friday (27 Nov.).  Additional results justified concerns over holiday fraud during trying times — with 36% of 1,000 Hong Kong consumers2 being affected by COVID-related fraud, up 20% from the same survey conducted the week of 13 April.  

“With the COVID-19 pandemic accelerating the move from offline to online transactions, detecting digital fraud attempts has become paramount for ecommerce providers,” said Jerry Ying, Asia Pacific Vice President, Innovative Solutions Group, TransUnion “To avoid cart abandonment with all of these new sales opportunities, it’s equally if not more important to ensure consumers are able to enjoy friction-right digital transactions.”

Top five holidays for highest suspected online fraud

1. Cyber Monday — 32.56%

2. Black Friday — 31.97%

3. Double 11 — 29.92%

4. Saturday, 28 Nov. — 26.15%

5. Thanksgiving — 24.54%

For a quick snapshot of TransUnion’s holiday online retail findings, click here.

[1] Suspected fraudulent and risky transactions are those that TransUnion’s customers either denied or reviewed due to fraudulent indicators

[2] Data from Global TransUnion Financial Hardship Study conducted Nov. 1 to Nov. 5, 2020.