Record $12.5B Lost to Online Crime in U.S.: FBI

Record $12.5B Lost to Online Crime in U.S.: FBI

March 13, 2024 : The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has issued its annual Internet Crime Report, revealing an alarming trend: a significant surge in cybercrime across the United States. The report discloses that U.S. residents suffered $12.5 billion in financial losses due to online criminal activity in 2023. This figure marks a nearly 22% surge compared to the previous year, underscoring the situation’s urgency.

The report highlights a corresponding rise in the complaints filed with the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3). In 2023, the IC3 received a record-breaking 880,418 complaints from the American public, reflecting a nearly 10% increase over the previous year. These statistics suggest a growing awareness of cybercrime among the population, alongside a potential escalation in criminal activity within the digital sphere.

Investment fraud continues to be the costliest form of online crime tracked by the IC3. In 2023, victims reported losses exceeding $4.57 billion to this type of fraud, representing a concerning 38% increase compared to 2022. Business Email Compromise (BEC) scams ranked second, with reported losses reaching $2.9 billion. Tech support scams rounded out the top three, highlighting a continued vulnerability among individuals targeted by these deceptive tactics.

The FBI underscores the crucial role of public vigilance in the fight against cybercrime. The report highlights the need for individuals to be cautious when engaging in online activities, especially those involving financial transactions. Moreover, the FBI urges the public to promptly report any cybercrime incidents to the IC3. This proactive reporting enables the FBI to gather valuable data and intelligence, which can be used to investigate and disrupt ongoing criminal operations.

The FBI recognizes the complex nature of effectively monitoring and mitigating cybercrime. The ever-evolving online threats necessitate a collective effort and constant adaptation from law enforcement agencies, technology companies, and the public. By staying informed and exercising caution, individuals can play a significant role in protecting themselves from online scams and criminal activities, contributing to the collective fight against cybercrime.

Looking ahead, the FBI is committed to prioritizing the fight against cybercrime. Continued investment in resources, personnel training, and public awareness campaigns will be crucial in this ongoing battle to protect the American public and financial security within the digital landscape.