Nearly 2 million Americans have had their checking accounts raided by criminals in the past 12 months, according to a soon-to-be released survey by market research group Gartner.

Consumers reported an average loss per incident of $1,200, pushing total losses higher than $2 billion for the year.



Gartner researcher Avivah Litan blamed online banking for most of the problem.



“There has been a big increase in the abuse of existing checking accounts,” Litan said. “What’s really scary about it is right now there are no back-end fraud detection solutions for it.”



The survey results, extrapolated from a telephone poll of 5,000 consumers conducted in April, offer a rare glimpse at the state of bank fraud: Financial institutions are tight-lipped about fraud losses. But Litan said the study confirms comments she regularly hears from bank investigators.



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