Fraud is the crime committed by intentionally misleading another person into believing or not believing an information, in order to cause damage to that person or for personal gain. Fraud generally refers to the use of deception. This is also an important factor in the legal definition of fraud. However in criminal law, fraud is defined as the deliberate use of deception for one’s personal gain.
Fraud can be committed in many ways, depending on the ability of the offender and the available means to commit the fraud. Among these are:
- pyramiding schemes
- mail fraud
- fraud using the internet
- fraud using the telephone
Fraud is commonly committee din the society, not only among those who live a hard life, but more so for those who live in high society. Fraud can easily be committed both by gang members and corporate officials. Lowly criminals commit fraud by stealing identities of people and using them for loans or any financial purpose. The rich and the educated can however commit massive fraud through insider trading and through the use of other business that may appear legal but is really a front for fraudulent activities. ==Fraud victims-- People who want to get rich quick are the ones who are often victimized by fraud particularly get-rich schemes. The pyramiding scheme is related to this because through pyramiding, a person expects to double or triple the amount he invests, in a short span of time and without much hard work. The groups of people who are easily victimized by fraud are:
- those who have money to spare like investors or creditors
- financial institutions
- credit card holders
Offenders of this crime often use and take advantage of a potential victim’s thirst for money. To avoid being victimized by fraud, one should always be on the lookout for easy money. If you are promised a huge amount of money without hard work on your part, then stop dealing with that person. If it seems like a good deal to pass up, then try to investigate the person or the company first.
Under the English Law, deception is also an important factor in classifying a crime under fraud. Among the crimes classified as fraud are:
- use of deceit in getting another’s property
- use of deceit in getting another’s services
- the use of false statements by company directors
- computer fraud