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FBI Says Online Fraud Doubled in 2009 to $559.7 Million

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By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Fraudulent crime on the Internet doubled in dollar value in 2009 compared to the year before, according to a report by the Crime Complaint Center, a partnership between the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center.

The report released Friday by the FBI showed that the total loss resulting from online fraud amounted to $559.7 million last year compared to $265 million in 2008.

The report said the number one fraud involved advance fee schemes using the FBI’s name. That accounted for 16.6 percent of the scams. The second most reported offense involved non-delivery or merchandise or failing to make a payment.

“Law enforcement relies on the corporate sector and citizens to report when they encounter on-line suspicious activity so these schemes can be investigated and criminals can be arrested,” Peter Trahon, section chief of the FBI’s Cyber Division said in a statement. “Computer users are encouraged to have up-to-date security protection on their devices and evaluate e-mail solicitations they receive with a healthy skepticism—if something seems too good to be true, it likely is.”

Donald Brackman, director of the White Collar Crime Center  said criminals are “developing increasingly sophisticated means of defrauding unsuspecting consumers. Internet crime is evolving in ways we couldn’t have imagined just five years ago.”

To Read the full report click here.


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