Many experts believe contactless security needs to be beefed up — including Ross Anderson, a former banking industry security consultant and now a professor of security engineering at the Computer Laboratory at Cambridge University.

‘The problem is the banks only count as fraud what they admit is fraud. Even in the official figures, contactless fraud is the fastest form of fraud in the UK,’ he says.

‘People should worry about this.’

Not least because the money lost by consumers and banks is going to increase.

The contactless card limit has risen rapidly from £10, when cards were launched ten years ago, to £20 and now £30.

Many banks are talking about raising it to £40 or £50.

Sarah Lewis, head of ID and fraud decision strategy at Equifax UK, the credit checking agency, says: ‘I do understand that people want things quicker, and it’s great for many consumers, but there is an element of risk.

‘The fewer barriers you put in front of the fraudster the easier it is for them.’

Contactless has been great for many consumers — but it has also been a bonanza for criminals, and until banks start taking it more seriously, nothing will change.

How secure are contactless cards?

Most banks in the UK now issue their cards as contactless cards meaning they can be used for transactions of £30 or under without a PIN or signature.

Other methods of contactless payment include using smartphones, mobile phone apps, key fobs and wearable devices including watches and wristbands.

According to the UK Cards Association, one in four card payments are now contactless – totalling more than £3.3 billion every month.

Contactless cards are built using the same secure system as Chip & PIN with each including a range of security features to safeguard information and protect customers from fraud.

There have also not been any confirmed reports of money being stolen from a contactless card while still in its owner’s possession, according to the association.

However, customers will get their money back from their bank if they are a victim of fraud.