Identity, Email security

FTC: Impersonation scam losses exceed $1.1B

Federal Trade Commission seal, sign and logo is seen in Washington.

BleepingComputer reports that the U.S. was noted by the Federal Trade Commission to have incurred more than $1.1 billion in losses from impersonation scams last year, a threefold increase from 2020.

Nearly 500,000 impersonation incidents were reported in 2023, most of which involved business impersonation scams, but the growing prevalence of multiple organization spoofing in a single scam campaign has complicated the distinction between business and government impersonation scams, according to a report from the FTC.

The findings also noted that fraudulent unauthorized account activity alerts, fake subscription renewals, bogus giveaways and discounts, false criminal activity claims, and fictitious package delivery issues were the most pervasive scams last year.

Despite a decline from 2020, phone calls continued to be the leading means of conducting impersonation scams, accounting for 32% of incident reports last year, followed by emails and text messages, which were attributed to 26% and 14% of incidents, respectively.

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