IC3 report says social media-related complaints quadrupled over five years

In its annual internet crime report (PDF), the FBI's Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) revealed that it received 269,422 complaints in 2014, up from 262,813 complaints last year.

Published Tuesday, IC3 estimated that last year's complaints represented a $800,492,073 loss. Furthermore, IC3 found that two major trends this year were criminals increased use of personal information found on social media to scam victims, and efforts to take advantage of digital currency systems.

The report noted that complaints involving social media quadrupled over the last five years, accounting for 12 percent of all complaints submitted last year. Click-jacking, hiding malicious hyperlinks in clickable content, and doxing, “publicly releasing a person's identifying information online without authorization,” were among the top fraudulent methods leveraging social media usage, including pharming, defined as redirecting users from legitimate sites to fraudulent ones to steal sensitive data, the report said.

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