Older adults scammed out of $342 million on internet in 2017, FBI says

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Older adults scammed out of $342 million on internet in 2017, FBI says
Older adults scammed out of $342 million on internet in 2017, FBI says

Adults aged 60 or more years lost more than $342 million as victims of internet scams in 2017, the FBI said Monday.

The statistic was part of the “2017 Internet Crime Report” released by the FBI's Internet Crime Complaint Center.

The center received 49,523 complaints from older adults in 2017, the FBI said. Overall, the center received 301,580 complaints, and total losses exceeded $1.4 billion.

The top three crime types reported by victims in 2017, according to the FBI:

  1. Non-payment/non-delivery —  In non-payment situations, goods and services are shipped, but payment is never rendered. In non-delivery situations, payment is sent, but goods and services are never received.
  2. Personal data breach — A leak or spill of personal data that is released from a secure location to an untrusted environment. Such breaches also may refer to a security incident in which an individual's sensitive, protected, or confidential data is copied, transmitted, viewed, stolen or used by an unauthorized individual.
  3. Phishing — Unsolicited email, text messages and telephone calls purportedly from a legitimate company requesting personal, financial and/or login credentials.

The top three crime types with the highest reported loss:

  1. Business email compromise — A scam targeting businesses working with foreign suppliers and/or businesses regularly performing wire transfer payments.
  2. Confidence/romance fraud — A perpetrator deceives a victim into believing the perpetrator and the victim have a trust relationship, whether family, friendly or romantic. As a result, the victim is persuaded to send money, personal and financial information, or items of value to the perpetrator or to launder money on behalf of the perpetrator. Some variations of this scheme are romance/dating scams or the grandparents scam.
  3. Non-payment/non-delivery.

To file a complaint with the center, visit its website.

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