Online fraud

A recent report released shows that online fraud cost $650 million last year in the US alone, up from $265 million in 2008.

The official report from the Internet Crime Complaint Center makes for disturbing reading, suggesting that online fraudsters are becoming more skilled at separating victims from their money.

Non-delivery of goods or payments was widely reported, and continues to be increasingly problematic.

Donald Brackman, Internet Crime Complaint Center Director, said:

“The figures contained in this report indicate that criminals are continuing to take full advantage of the anonymity afforded to them by the Internet. They are also developing increasingly sophisticated means of defrauding unsuspecting consumers. Internet crime is evolving in ways we couldn’t have imagined just five years ago.”

Of the top five categories reported to law enforcement during 2009, non-delivered merchandise and/or payment fraud ranked nearly 20 percent (including medical equipment and devices); identity theft 14 percent; credit card and auction fraud, just over 10 percent each.

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