Web retailers should stop accepting transactions from customers using Yahoo and Hotmail e-mail addresses, according to credit-reference agency Checkmyfile.
The company said retailers accepting transactions from the popular Web-based e-mail services are up to seven times more likely to have to refund the owners’ credit cards due to fraudulent activity.
Customers are protected on the Web by a chargeback scheme allowing them to reverse a credit card transaction if they don’t recognize a purchase, and checkmyfile said e-commerce firms are increasingly being targeted by identity thieves using Yahoo’s and Microsoft’s e-mail tools.
“Most Internet retailers have little defense against a chargeback, other than to blacklist the card on the National Chargeback Register,” said Barry Stamp, joint managing director of checkmyfile.
The company said fraudsters use yahoo.co.uk e-mail addresses in seven out of 10 cases of identity theft, with yahoo.com and hotmail.co.uk addresses also ranking high on the list.
“Consumers who currently use such addresses may well be better off using a more conventionally based e-mail address,” said Stamp.
-Paul Trotter, PC Advisor (UK)
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