52% of HNWIs have been victims of crime in the last year

Date: 04 Apr 2023

Vicente Luckina Bunn

Recent research has found that over half of HNWIs have been victims of crime in the last 12 months.

New research commissioned by specialist insurer Ecclesiastical has revealed that more than half, 52%, of high net worth individuals (HNWIs) have been victims of crime in the last 12 months. On average, these crimes have cost them more than £72,000. The majority – three-in-five, 60% – are more concerned about crime now due to the cost-of-living crisis.

Of those who have experienced a crime in the past 12 months, almost half suffered a theft, 49%. One in five HNWIs reported experiencing trespassing, 23%, home intrusions, 20%, and criminal damage, 20%. A high-profile example took place in December 2022, when England footballer Raheem Sterling’s home in Surrey was burgled while he was away at the World Cup in Qatar. Thieves stole a number of valuable items including jewellery and watches.

The survey found criminals are also targeting home offices and second homes. Nearly two in five, 39%, crimes experienced by HNWIs in the past year happened in home offices. One in five, 22%, happened at their second home or holiday home. With rising inflation and the cost of living crisis, wealthy individuals and their second homes are a prime target for criminals, with many unoccupied for several months during the year.

Use of social media platforms is also a concern for HNWIs, as two in five, 42%, worry they overshare information about their home or lifestyle. Social media activity can provide criminal gangs with clear patterns and routines, making it easier for them to target wealthy families and their homes. Almost half, 46%, are worried their friends and family also overshare information about them and their lifestyles on social media.

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