2019 statistic for financial fraud are still in the process of being released, but if we are to predict a rise in 2019, then then we will need to take a look at 2018’s stats. Overall there were 3 million identity thefts reported in 2018 and of those 3 million, a quarter of them resulted in financial fraud. This is an astounding figure and is only related to the USA with a population of close to 300 million.
We can only cringe at the thought of how fraud was committed across the globe, but for now we will stick to USA. We can also presume that more people in USA use anti-virus software and privatevpn software subscriptions to protect themselves from identity fraud, but in lower economically developed countries (LEDCs) the citizens are unlikely to be able to afford these kinds of software protection tools on top of their internet bill, and therefore it would be reasonable to assume the stats for identity theft are much higher despite the potentially smaller picking for financial fraudsters.
In the USA alone $1.48 billion was lost as a direct result of financial fraud. This is in fact a $406 million rise compared to the same stats recorded in 2017. In 2019 we do not expect these figures to decrease as inevitably cyber criminals become savvier, crime syndicates that specialize in online fraud grow, and the population increases meaning more people online and inevitably more reported cases of frauds.
What Types Of Identity Theft Were Reported?
There are obviously numerous variations of identity theft out there. Not all of them resulted in a financial fraud, but all the same, they could very easily well have. Credit card fraud was the most prevalent as 130,928 cases were reported in 2018. These were all online cases in which people had managed to apply for a new credit card under the person’s name or steal the credit card during transit to people that had ordered new cards.
There were around 87,765 miscellaneous fraud cases reported that led to financial fraud. These ranged from making purchases using the user’s account, using the person’s identity to purchase airline tickets, and other frauds that did not cost the person money, but financial transactions were carried out using their name.
Mobile telephone fraud was another one. Overall, 33,466 cases were reported in which SIM cards were duplicated or mobile phones were used to confirm financial accounts that meant investigations led back to a rather shocked and very innocent suspect that had to be arrested and interviewed before actually being cleared of the fraud case.
As for people that already own a credit card, 32,329 fell victim to cybercriminal activity that led to someone using their credit card details online.
Many of these cases could have been prevented if the victims were aware of ways that they could protect themselves. None of them had a private VPN to protect their internet connection while surfing the World Web, accessing financial accounts, or making purchases via internet access points that were not their own. This means they used an access point that was public such as ones found in shopping centers or train stations where you can connect for free. These are easy place for those involved in financial fraud to get people’s information as the connections are unsecure and sessions can be easily infiltrated. However had these people used a VPN to encrypt their connection, the fraud would never have occurred.