U.S. adults aged 70 or more years reported losses of more than $140 million from fraud in 2017, according to a publication released Thursday by the Federal Trade Commission.
Adults aged 70 to 79 years experienced $80 million in losses, and those aged 80 or more years saw $60 million in losses, according to the Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book 2017, which reports information compiled via a secure online database available only to members of law enforcement. This year’s book details fraud losses by age group for the first time.
Those 70 to 79 years old accounted for 62,443 (11%) of the 555,834 fraud complaints for which consumers provided their age, and those aged 80 or more years accounted for 28,555 of the reports, or 5%.
Cutting the data another way, the FTC said that those aged 70 or more years accounted for 36% of the 1.1 million total fraud complaints filed in 2017; 49% of the reports included age information. Those aged 70 to 79 accounted for 18% of the fraud complaints, and those aged 80 or more years made another 18%.
Adults 70 to 79 who reported a monetary loss had a median loss of $621, and adults 80 or older had a median loss of $1,092. Interestingly, the percentage of adults reporting a monetary loss via fraud decreased with the decades starting with the 20-to-29-year-old age group, but the median dollar amount trended upward as age decade increased.
During 2017, according to the report, the Consumer Sentinel Network received 2.7 million complaints, slightly fewer than in 2016. As mentioned, fraud accounted for 1.1 million, or 42.54% of them. Imposter scams were the top type of fraud reported.
Identity theft accounted for 371,000, or 13.87% of the complaints. The most frequent type of identity theft reported was credit card fraud.
Debt collection, however, accounted for the highest percentage of overall complaints, at 22.74%.
The data book also includes national statistics, as well as a state-by-state listing of top report categories in each state and a listing of metropolitan areas that generated the most complaints per capita. View the entire report on the FTC website.
From Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book 2017.