Police have revealed that frauds – including those involving taxis – have jumped by almost a fifth in Dundee.
Between April and September, there were 177 fraud offences in the city, an increase of almost 20% compared to the same period last year.
Of those cases, 65 were solved.
Graeme Stephen, chairman of the Dundee Taxi Association, said he had seen a rise in passengers trying to avoid paying fares.
He said: “Taxi fraud happens in Dundee. Some of our members have had this happen to them.
“I have been a taxi driver for 30 years and I would say, in this day and age, it happens more. People think they can get away with it.
“You may not experience it for a year and then you get someone not paying two or three times in one go, so it doesn’t surprise me that it is on the rise.
“There is more and more CCTV in taxis in Dundee which does help, both as a deterrent and as a way of catching people.”
One taxi driver, who declined to be named, said he thinks the problem is fuelled by passengers being under the influence.
He said: “There has definitely been an increase in the last two or three years. It’s quite frustrating.
“It’s mostly people being aggressive after taking drink and drugs.
“I have been a taxi driver for 14 years and I’d say it’s on the up.
“Usually people skip on a fare of about £8-£9.
“Getting the money upfront helps – I do that if it’s a large amount.”
Across Scotland, ATM frauds are decreasing but scams involving contactless payments are rising as the technology becomes more widely used.
A number of high-value frauds such as vishing, bogus crime and romance fraud have also been reported and people committing these kinds of crimes often target the elderly and vulnerable.
Deputy Chief Constable Fiona Taylor said: “Fraudsters will use any opportunity to profit from their victims and we are determined to disrupt those who seek to exploit our communities this way.
“We are working with high street banks and trading standards teams to prevent customers falling victim to fraud, allowing staff to alert the police to any unusual withdrawals.
“The introduction of this banking protocol has resulted in more than £1.8 million in fraudulent transactions being prevented since Police Scotland joined the scheme in March.”