Home Risk Managements FBI: U.S. lost record $12.5 billion to online crime in 2023 – Source: www.bleepingcomputer.com

FBI: U.S. lost record $12.5 billion to online crime in 2023 – Source: www.bleepingcomputer.com

FBI: U.S. lost record $12.5 billion to online crime in 2023 – Source: www.bleepingcomputer.com

The 2023 Internet Crime Report released by the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) has revealed a concerning increase in reported losses compared to the previous year, totaling a record of $12.5 billion. This represents a 22% increase in losses from 2022, with a total of 880,000 complaints submitted to the agency in 2023, marking a 10% increase from the year before.

One significant trend highlighted in the report is the vulnerability of older adults to cybercrime, with individuals over the age of 60 topping the list of victims. This demographic group has been increasingly targeted by online criminals, emphasizing the importance of cybersecurity awareness among older populations.

The rise in both complaints and financial losses due to internet crimes has been a consistent trend observed by the FBI since 2019. The 2023 report underscores the need for enhanced cybersecurity measures to protect individuals and organizations from the evolving tactics of cybercriminals.

The report identified several specific types of online crimes that experienced an increase in 2023, including tech support scams and extortion. On the other hand, crimes such as phishing, personal data breaches, and non-payment/non-delivery scams saw a slight decrease in reported incidents.

Four primary categories of online crimes were highlighted in the report as causing the most financial losses in the United States in 2023. These included Business Email Compromise (BEC), investment fraud, ransomware, and tech/customer support and government impersonation scams.

BEC scams accounted for over $2.9 billion in losses from 21,489 complaints in 2023, with fraudsters increasingly utilizing cryptocurrency platforms for fund dispersal. Investment fraud saw a 38% increase last year, resulting in confirmed losses of $4.57 billion, driven by a significant rise in cryptocurrency-related scams.

Ransomware attacks, which targeted critical infrastructure sectors such as healthcare, manufacturing, government, and IT, resulted in estimated losses exceeding $59.6 million in 2023. However, the actual total may be significantly higher, as many ransom payments go unreported.

Efforts to recover stolen funds from cybercrimes are facilitated by IC3’s Recovery Asset Team (RAT), which collaborates with law enforcement and financial institutions to freeze fraudulent transfers. The team successfully traced and reversed several payments made to BEC actors in 2023, totaling millions of dollars in recovered funds.

While the figures presented in the 2023 Internet Crime Report represent known cases of internet crime reported to authorities, the total impact of cybercrime in the U.S. is likely much higher. Many incidents go undetected or unreported, highlighting the ongoing challenge of combating online criminal activity.

In conclusion, the 2023 Internet Crime Report serves as a stark reminder of the growing threat of cybercrime and the need for increased vigilance and cybersecurity measures to protect individuals and organizations from financial losses and security breaches. Organizations and individuals are encouraged to stay informed about evolving cyber threats and take proactive steps to safeguard their digital assets and personal information.

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