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Internet Crime Report Finds 22% Increase in CyberCrime Complaints

March 29th, 2010 | News,shopping,Small Business,Small Business Tips | 1 Comment »

The Internet Crime Complaint Center is a partnership between the National White Collar Crime Center and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and is set up to receive complaints of crime on the internet. The Complaint Center is known as IC3 and annual issues a report notifying the public of trends that they see in complaints that they have received from the public about cybercrime.  IC3 received complaints across a wide spectrum of cybercrimes including online fraud, computer intrusions and hacking, theft of trade secrets, identity theft and international money laundering.  The 2009 Internet Crime Report was just published in mid-March 2010 and  here are some of the key findings:

1) There was a 22% increase in cybercrime complaints in 2009 compared to 2008 (336, 655 total complaints)

2) More than a half billion dollars in monetary losses were reported in 2009 – $559.7 million – from cybercrime

3) The top 5 categories of reported offenses from victims were: a) non-delivered merchandise(19.9%); identity theft (14.1%), credit card fraud (10.4%), auction fraud (10.3%) and computer fraud (7.95%).

4) Of those victims that reported monetary losses from the cybercrime, the mean dollar loss was $5,580 and the median was $575.

5) The vast majority of the complaints were made from the United States, but IC3 received complaints from victims in Canada, the UK, Australia and India.

6) The perpetrators in the United States tended to reside in the followings states: California, Florida, New York, the District of Columbia, Texas and Washington.  A number of perpetrators were also alleged to have been in the UK, Nigeria, Canada, Malaysia and Ghana.

What does all of this mean?  All of this reinforces that online shoppers must remain vigilant when they shop online.  Cybercrime is only increasing.  We have covered in previous posts 5 Steps for a Safe Online Shopping Experience.  Shoppers should familiarize yourself with these and other steps to keep you safe online.  The Ic3 also listed a good resource at www.lookstoogoodtobetrue.com that consumers can look to for consumer alerts, tips and fraud trends.  Separately, we have also given online sellers guidance as well on ways that merchants can build, demonstrate and increase trust for their website visitors so they can sell more.

We imagine cybercrime will only continue to grow and so we must be prepared to combat it by demanding transparency online and arming ourselves with information and safe shopping tactics so we do not become another victim.

Please tell us what you think of the 2009  Internet Crime Report and these statistics.

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