Throughout the world, identity theft is a widely known occurrence that continues to affect countless people in many different ways. While this is an indisputable fact in and of itself, it’s fair to be curious about the cold, hard data of identity theft. For example, you might be wondering just how many people are victims of identity theft each year? Or, how much money is lost to identity theft each year? As the saying goes, the numbers don’t lie, and that is the precise focus of today’s blog – today we’ll be talking about the quantitative data on identity theft. Keep reading below for more information!
Fact #1: The FTC received 1.4 Million Reports of Identity Theft in 2021
Last year, the Federal Trade Commission, or FTC, tallied 1.4 million reports of identity theft just in the United States alone. Alarmingly, this number doesn’t account for general fraud or other scams that victimize unsuspecting Americans in their own right. With optimism, proper awareness, and vigilance, this number could undergo a great reduction in the foreseeable future.
Fact #2: Prizes, Sweepstakes, and Lotteries Were the Top 3
Whether online or elsewhere, if you see something that’s too good to be true, the chances are high that it is. This is validated by the fact that prizes, sweepstakes, and lotteries were the three most common categories of fraud in 2021. False gimmicks have been a longstanding pest on the internet and in real life, yet they remain devastatingly effective, costing victims outrageous amounts of money, time, etc. In combatting these schemes, consumers should always exercise caution and avoid engaging with these scams at all costs.
Fact #3: $5.8 Billion Was Lost to Fraud in 2021
The FTC reported a whopping $5.8 billion was lost at the hands of fraud in 2021, an over 70% increase from 2020. Though this statistic is not exclusive to identity theft, it is nonetheless troubling, as an imposter or identity-related scams were the most-reported types of fraud in 2021. Though this is a regretful and concerning statistic, consumers can do their part going forward to keep their money out of the hands of fraudsters.
Fact #4: Online Shopping Fraud $392 Million in 2021
At one point or another, online shopping is something that virtually every consumer has participated in. Though this has made shopping easier than ever for consumers, it has also made things dangerous. As a preventive measure against fraud, ensure your payment information is secure whilst online shopping and do not provide it to unreputable entities.
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