noun \ˈfrd\

: the crime of using dishonest methods to take something valuable from another person

: a person who pretends to be what he or she is not in order to trick people

: a copy of something that is meant to look like the real thing in order to trick people

Full Definition of FRAUD

a :  deceit, trickery; specifically :  intentional perversion of truth in order to induce another to part with something of value or to surrender a legal right
b :  an act of deceiving or misrepresenting :  trick
a :  a person who is not what he or she pretends to be :  impostor; also :  one who defrauds :  cheat
b :  one that is not what it seems or is represented to be

Origin of FRAUD

Middle English fraude, from Anglo-French, from Latin fraud-, fraus
First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of FRAUD

deception, fraud, double-dealing, subterfuge, trickery mean the acts or practices of one who deliberately deceives. deception may or may not imply blameworthiness, since it may suggest cheating or merely tactical resource <magicians are masters of deception>. fraud always implies guilt and often criminality in act or practice <indicted for fraud>. double-dealing suggests treachery or at least action contrary to a professed attitude <a go-between suspected of double-dealing>. subterfuge suggests the adoption of a stratagem or the telling of a lie in order to escape guilt or to gain an end <obtained the papers by subterfuge>. trickery implies ingenious acts intended to dupe or cheat <resorted to trickery to gain their ends>.

imposture, fraud, sham, fake, humbug, counterfeit mean a thing made to seem other than it is. imposture applies to any situation in which a spurious object or performance is passed off as genuine <their claim of environmental concern is an imposture>. fraud usually implies a deliberate perversion of the truth <the diary was exposed as a fraud>. sham applies to fraudulent imitation of a real thing or action <condemned the election as a sham>. fake implies an imitation of or substitution for the genuine but does not necessarily imply dishonesty <these jewels are fakes; the real ones are in the vault>. humbug suggests elaborate pretense usually so flagrant as to be transparent <creating publicity by foisting humbugs on a gullible public>. counterfeit applies especially to the close imitation of something valuable <20-dollar bills that were counterfeits>.

Other Legal Terms

actionable, alienable, carceral, chattel, complicity, decedent, larceny, malfeasance, modus operandi

Rhymes with FRAUD

FRAUD Defined for Kids


noun \ˈfrd\

Definition of FRAUD for Kids

:  trickery, deceit <They got the money by fraud.>
:  an act of deceiving :  trick <Investigators uncovered the fraud.>
:  a person who pretends to be what he or she is not <You're not Santa Claus—you're a fraud.>
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