Suspected digital holiday shopping fraud in U.S. increases 127% compared to rest of 2022

TransUnion analyzes early holiday e-commerce fraud attempt rates

CHICAGO, IL (December 1, 2022) — TransUnion (NYSE: TRU) released new findings today around global e-commerce fraud that occurred during the start of the 2022 holiday shopping season. The analysis found that the average number of suspected digital fraud attempts on any given day between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday (Thursday, Nov. 24, and Monday, Nov. 28) was 82% higher globally than during the rest of the year (Jan. 1, 2022 to Nov. 23, 2022) and 127% greater than during the rest of the year for transactions originating in the U.S.

These findings are based on intelligence from billions of transactions contained in TransUnion’s TruValidate™ fraud analytics solution suite. The analysis determined 15% of all global e-commerce transactions reviewed between Thursday, Nov. 24, and Monday, Nov. 28 were potentially fraudulent.[2] For transactions originating from the U.S., 18% of e-commerce transactions during that period were suspected to be fraudulent.

The study also revealed the share of suspected digital fraud attempts for each individual day in the holiday shopping period for transactions in the U.S. The greatest propensity of risky transactions occurred during Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Breakdown of Risky Transactions During Holiday Period

Day Percentage of All Holiday Period Risky Transactions by Day (Nov. 24-28)
Friday, Nov. 25th  (Black Friday) 26%
Monday, Nov. 28th  (Cyber Monday) 24%
Saturday, Nov. 26th 22%
Sunday, Nov. 27th 16%
Thursday, Nov. 24th (Thanksgiving) 12%


“Fraudulent activity tends to be particularly prevalent in online retail during the holiday shopping season,” said Shai Cohen, senior vice president and head of global fraud solutions at TransUnion. “Despite the fact that consumers have begun returning in larger numbers to in-person shopping in the post-pandemic era, online retail continues to be the preferred means of holiday shopping for many. It’s important that online retailers ensure consumer security and privacy protections, which is important to consumers, but in a way which ensures a seamless shopping experience that minimizes unnecessary friction.”

TransUnion also revealed in the analysis the top types of fraudulent e-commerce transactions during the holiday shopping season. This year, promotion abuse and account takeover were the leading fraud attempt types.

“Online retailers must equip themselves with the proper tools to detect fraud at the first warning sign, and without inhibiting the consumer journey,” said Cecilia Seiden, vice president of the retail business at TransUnion. “It’s more important than ever that these online retailers implement holistic fraud solutions that are able to verify customer identity and authenticity at the very beginning of a transaction without resulting in false positives that may cost them legitimate transactions.”

Consumers express more concern this holiday season

The increase of suspected digital fraud during the traditional busiest days of the holiday shopping season occurred as consumers express concern about being victimized. TransUnion’s 2022 Consumer Holiday Shopping Survey conducted in August 2022 found that 54% of American consumers are concerned with being victimized by online fraud this holiday season, a 17% increase from last year.

TransUnion monitors digital fraud attempts reported by businesses in varied industries such as gambling, gaming, financial services, healthcare, insurance, retail, and travel and leisure, among others. The conclusions are based on intelligence from billions of transactions and more than 40,000 websites and apps contained in TransUnion’s flagship identity insights, digital insights, omnichannel authentication, and fraud analytics solution suite – TruValidate™.

About TransUnion

TransUnion is a global information and insights company with over 13,000 associates operating in more than 30 countries. We make trust possible by ensuring each person is reliably represented in the marketplace. We do this with a Tru™ picture of each person: an actionable view of consumers, stewarded with care. Through our acquisitions and technology investments we have developed innovative solutions that extend beyond our strong foundation in core credit into areas such as marketing, fraud, risk and advanced analytics. As a result, consumers and businesses can transact with confidence and achieve great things. We call this Information for Good® — and it leads to economic opportunity, great experiences and personal empowerment for millions of people around the world.


Michael Ingalls
SVP, Media Relations
PenVine for TransUnion
Phone: (917) 494-4909

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