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Highest losses ever reported to FTC in 2023. Here are the top scams of the year

The Federal Trade Commission’s Data Book shows that people who reported scams to the FTC lost $10 billion in 2023, the highest losses ever reported to the agency.

But the number of reports (2.6 million) was about the same as the year before.

One in four people reported losing money to scams, with a median loss of $500 per person.

The No. 1 contact method for scammers in 2023? Email. Especially when scammers pretend to be a business or government agency to steal money.

  • Imposter scams (42,000 reports, $178 million in losses)

  • Online shopping/negative reviews

  • Prizes, sweepstakes, lotteries

  • Investment scams

  • Business/job opportunity scams

  • Imposter scams. Imposter scams remained the top fraud category, with reported losses of $2.7 billion. These scams include people pretending to be your bank’s fraud department, the government, a relative in distress, a well-known business, or a technical support expert.

  • Investment scams. While investment-related scams were the fourth most-reported fraud category, losses in this category grew. People reported median losses of $7.7K – up from $5K in 2022.

  • Social media scams. Scams starting on social media accounted for the highest total losses at $1.4 billion – an increase of 250 million from 2022. But scams that started by a phone call caused the highest per-person loss ($1,480 average loss).

  • Payment methods. How did scammers prefer that people pay? With bank transfers and payments, which accounted for the highest losses ($1.86 billion). Cryptocurrency is a close second ($1.41 billion reported in losses).

  • Losses by age. Of people who reported their age, younger adults (20-29) reported losing money more often than older adults (70+). However, when older adults lost money, they lost the most.

  • Source

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