Action Fraud, the UK's national fraud reporting centre, has launched a new service that encourages members of the public to forward scam emails to a dedicated email address in order to be passed onto the police for further analysis, the organisation said on Friday.
The organisation — run by the National Fraud Authority (NFA), the government agency responsible for co-ordinating the battle against fraud in the UK — is asking that suspected scam emails are forwarded on to firstname.lastname@example.org in order to help cut down on the number of online scams.
"This is the first time we have been able to collect and analyse scam mail and emails in this way. Collecting intelligence is the key to us being able to disrupt the activities of fraudsters and target their networks for closure," Bernard Herdan, chief executive of the National Fraud Authority, said in a statement.
Once a scam email report has been received it is then forwarded onto the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) run by the City of London Police, which collates and analyses all of the scam emails.
"Collecting intelligence is the key to us being able to disrupt the activities of fraudsters and target their networks for closure," Herdan said.
In January, the organisation published its annual Fraud Indicator report which put the cost of fraud against individuals at around £4bn per year. It said that the majority of this is from mass marketing fraud which includes "romance fraud".