Scammers on Social Media Stole $770 Million in 2021 According to the FTC Data

Social media is in many ways a digital extension of the kinds of community interactions that have been commonplace in humanity since the beginning of our shared history. That means that it shares a lot of the positive as well as negative aspects of such forms of interaction. Essentially, the same features that allow social media to be so innovative and lets you communicate with people all around the world also make it a fair bit easier for scams to be conducted.

A combination of increased social media use during the peak of the pandemic as well as increasingly advanced technology that allows scams to be conducted has resulted in total losses from social media scams tripling over the last year or so. According to a report recently released by the FTC, total losses from social media scams exceed $770 million in 2021, three times the approximately $258 million in losses that occurred in 2020 which indicates that this phenomenon is increasingly more or less exponentially.

This report only includes scams that were conducted through Instagram and Facebook, two of the biggest social media platforms out there. Many of the scams are associated with cryptocurrency related fraud. Crypto has become a hot button issue these past few years, and the fact that they have risen in value so rapidly as well as a general lack of knowledge among the general populace about such matters has resulted in these scams being tremendously profitable for the malicious actors that decide to take part in them for one reason or another.

The second type of major scam is called a Romance Scam. Basically, someone might receive a message from a fake account that involves an offer of friendship or perhaps a romantic relationship. As this relationship progresses, the victim of the scam would eventually be asked for money, and many people go through with this since they are unaware that the person on the other end is little more than a scam artist. This highlights the need for more education among various internet users since most of them don’t seem to realize that not everyone on the internet is being honest all in all.

Read next: Hijacked Instagram Accounts are being sold over the internet for $40K
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