FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center releases 2021 Internet Crime Report | Top Stories

(WAND)- The FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center has released the 2021 Internet Crime Report. 

The FBI reports an unprecedented increase in cyberattacks and malicious cyber activity throughout the country, including cyberattacks  that compromised businesses in an extensive array of business sectors as well as the American public.

According to officials, IC3 received a total of 847,376 reported complaints, a 7% increase from the previous year, with potential losses exceeding $6.9 billion. The largest age group affected by internet crime in both number of victims and dollar loss were citizens aged 60 and older.

Among all of the complaints received in 2021, ransomware, business e-mail compromise (BEC) schemes, and the criminal use of cryptocurrency are among the top incidents reported.

Officials say in 2021, BEC schemes resulted in 19,954 complaints with an adjusted loss of nearly $2.4 billion.

BEC is a sophisticated scam targeting both businesses and individuals performing transfers of funds. The scam is frequently carried out when a subject compromises legitimate business email accounts through social engineering or computer intrusion techniques to conduct unauthorized transfers of funds.

Officials report the state-wide rankings, Illinois was 5th highest for number of victims at 17,999, and 7th highest for victim dollar loss at $184.9 million. The top three Internet crimes by dollar loss in Illinois were:

  • · BEC – $86,247,797
  • · Investment Fraud – $21, 231,514
  • · Personal Data Breach – $19,759,036

“Targeting cybercrime is one of the FBI’s highest priorities and our unique partnerships have become an increasingly key part in combating this threat,” said FBI Springfield Field Office Special Agent in Charge David Nanz. “While our private sector partners share the benefit of their insight, knowledge and experience, the FBI shares indicators, tactics, and threat information. This combined intelligence makes us all stronger and provides a better security posture before an incident occurs.”

The IC3 was established by the FBI in May 2000 to receive complaints of internet related crime and has received more than 6.5 million complaints since its inception, averaging 552,000 complaints per year over the last five years. 

If you are the victim of an internet crime, submit a complaint to IC3. You can also file a complaint on behalf of another person. More details regarding the 2021 Internet Crime Report can be found online.

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