Consumers of all ages make fraudulent personal technology claims in order to upgrade, according to survey

One in 20 people have submitted a false claim for a lost or stolen personal technology item, such as a mobile phone, according to a new survey by Direct Line.In the 16-24 age range, the survey found as many as one in seven people had fraudulently claimed for lost or stolen items such as mobile phones, cameras or Walkmans in order to upgrade to a newer version.The survey also found 8% of 35-44 year olds have made fraudulent claims for personal technology items and one in 20 over 65s had also attempted a similar fraud.Scotland (1%) and the North East (3%) had the lowest amount of people admitting to having made fraudulent claims, compared to 12% of people in Wales and 11% in East Anglia. Direct Line head of e-commerce Richard Coombe said: "Even allowing for the fact that many people are likely to prefer to keep this type of information to themselves when asked, this survey has revealed a huge trend towards people of all ages attempting this type of insurance fraud, particularly regarding personal technology type products.""With these products increasingly widely available there is clearly a diminishing social stigma to using any - even illegal - means to obtain the latest piece of kit."South Yorkshire Police recently offered an amnesty for people admitting to having falsely reported mobile phone thefts. The force receives around 160 false reports per month, which cost £1m per year to investigate.The National Mobile Phone Crime Unit has also discovered instances where shop assistants at mobile phone retailers have encouraged false reports.

How prevalent is technology fraud?Personal technology fraud relates to false claims made for lost/stolen items such as mobile phones, cameras and Walkmans.Percentage of UK population to have made such a claim: 5%Percentage of 16-24 year olds: 14.3%Percentage of 35-44 year olds: 8%Percentage of over-65s: 5%