Report: Total Number of Fraud Victims Tops 16 Million

The number of fraud victims in the U.S. rose by eight percent in 2017 to total 16.7 million, according to new data released by Javelin Strategy & Research last week. U.S. consumers experienced a total of $16.8 billion in fraud losses.

The survey noted that fraud tactics have become increasingly more sophisticated over the past year. Reports of account takeover reached a four-year high in 2017, with losses from that kind of fraud totaling $5.1 billion. The survey also noted an uptick in the number of intermediary accounts — such as Paypal or Amazon accounts — that were opened fraudulently and used to transfer funds from victims’ existing accounts.

In a year that saw several high-profile data breaches — including those at Yahoo and Equifax that exposed the personal data of millions of consumers — concern about identity theft was on the rise in 2017. Sixty-nine percent of consumers reported being concerned about fraud, up from 51 percent in 2016.


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