The consumers in the US lost nearly $8.8 billion to scams in 2022, an increase of more than 30 per cent over the previous year, a new report has shown. According to the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC), consumers reported losing more money to investment scams — more than $3.8 billion — than any other category in 2022.
That amount more than doubles the amount reported lost in 2021. Moreover, the report showed that imposter scams caused the second-highest loss amount — $2.6 billion, up from $2.4 billion in 2021.
Prizes, sweepstakes, lotteries, investment-related scams, and business and job opportunities rounded out the top five fraud categories. Nearly 2.4 million consumers reported fraudulent activity on their accounts last year, most commonly imposter scams, followed by online shopping scams, the report said.
Earlier this month, the FTC released a similar report, saying romance scammers received a hefty payout last year, involving 70,000 victims who lost a combined $1.3 billion.
The report showed that romance scammers often use dating apps to target people looking for love. Nearly 40 per cent of people who lost money to a romance scam last year, said the contact started on social media, while 19 per cent said it started on a website or app.
Many people mentioned that the scammer then quickly moved the conversation to WhatsApp, Google Chat or Telegram. (IANS)