Nearly half of Americans think wearing clothes and then giving them back should be a crime

NEW YORK – Should wearing clothes and then returning them for a refund be a criminal offence? Nearly half of Americans think so, according to new research. A recent A study of 2,000 adults explores their views on policy abuse as well as “friendly fraud” – when a consumer requests a chargeback from their bank.

It reveals that 46% think they are wearing clothes for an occasion and returning them for a full refund, also known as wardrobe, should be considered a serious illegal offense. This isn’t the only dodgy loophole consumers are using to save money. How about creating multiple emails to take advantage of customer discounts or free trial subscriptions? Forty-three percent and 40 percent of respondents, respectively, think these are also serious crimes.

Compared to sentiment about eating and rushing (44% think it’s a serious crime) and secretly recording another person (45%), this research may represent growing awareness of online fraud .

Produced by OnePoll on behalf of Fortressthe survey also presents respondents with what-if scenarios regarding friendly fraud and policy abuse, which 55% say are harmful to consumers and retailers.

When asked what semi-shade activities they had considered doing in the past 12 months, a quarter admitted to borrowing a friend’s membership to avoid paying a fee (25%). Others considered creating multiple email accounts to take advantage of free trial subscriptions (25%) and canceling or disputing a purchase with their bank despite the merchant fulfilling their order (24%) .

Is it still okay to commit friendly fraud?

In theory, the items people felt most comfortable considering return abuse — returning items in mint condition or falsifying receipts to receive a refund — were big-ticket items like kitchen appliances. (23%), electronic devices such as telephones (22%), clothing (21%). ) and basic necessities (19%). When asked specifically about an impending recession and whether it might change their likelihood of committing friendly fraud, 39% said they likely would, compared to 36% of those who said they wouldn’t. not into this type of activity and a quarter who remained neutral.

On the moral front, the results were a bit mixed. The majority think it is never acceptable to steal from family stores and large chain stores (80% and 76%, respectively). However, more respondents find it acceptable to steal from large retail chains than from family stores (14% vs. 11%).

“The end result: friendly fraud hurts both loyal customers and retailers,” says Oksana Balytsky, director of product marketing at Forter. “Our goal is to enable trust within digital commerce so that the buyer’s journey is as seamless as possible with no room for fraud, saving millions of dollars in lost revenue.”

And when respondents are faced with an unpleasant retail experience, some believe disputing a charge is worth it. A third (35%) believe it is easier to file a complaint with their bank than to go through a merchant’s customer service department. Despite these thoughts, 67% have never disputed a legitimate credit card charge, while 27% have.

What should a retailer do to work things out with the consumer so they don’t file a chargeback? Respondents suggest having good customer service (55%), providing prompt refunds (53%), credit/points (36%) and a free item (35%) as a starting point.

Survey methodology:

This double opt-in random survey of 2,000 general population Americans was ordered by Fortress between August 12 and August 17, 2022. It was conducted by the market research company OnePollwhose team members are members of the market research company and are corporate members of the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Research in Marketing (ESOMAR).

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