The Internet Crime Complaint Center, or IC3 as the group is also known, has released its annual Internet Crime Report for 2011. The center received 314,246 complaints during the year, adding up to an estimated $485 million in losses for the year. The most commonly reported scams were FBI-related, in which victims would encounter criminals posing as the FBI. Romance scams on dating forums and chat rooms, in which “scammers use poetry, flowers and other gifts to reel in
victims, while declaring ‘undying love,'” accounted for about $50 million in known losses over the year (about $5,700 every hour). Identity theft, auto auction frauds (in which criminals posted sale ads for vehicles that they did not own) and loan intimidation schemes
(particularly nefarious because criminals provided accurate personal details of their victims like their social security number or bank account number) were also major culprits.
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