Faking it UK

27 April 2004
More than one in 20 Brits have admitted to forging their boss' signature.

The new data comes hot on the heels of City PA Joyti De-Laurey being found guilty of taking £4.3 million from her bosses at investment bank Goldman Sachs.

But it seems her faking is far from unique.

Staff across the UK owned up to faking signatures on everything from leaving cards to official letters, with one in four saying they faked the name as they were too lazy to find the person and get them to sign themselves.

Away from work 20 per cent of people admitted to faking a note that got them off games at school.

Banking giant Lloyds TSB - who conducted the survey - said that while most of this fakery is harmless it proves how simple it is to simulate a signature.

The most dishonest group is the 25-34 age bracket, but these are also the people most likely to misplace credit cards, the bank adds.

The report follows the news that three quarters of people have seen staff in shops fail to check the signature on their card after they made a purchase.

Helen van Orton, form Lloyds TSB card division, commented: "The recent explosion in card fraud is partly due to fraudsters getting better at imitating signatures."

But there is good news on the way.

"Chip and PIN" cards are currently being launched - after a five month trial. The new technology means customers type a four-digit number into a pad when they buy goods on their card, instead of signing their name.

"It makes card fraud considerably more difficult, as you need to know your secret four-digit number to make a payment," Ms van Orton noted.