FBI: $4.2 Billion Lost to Cybercrime in 2020

HIPAA Journal

Steve Alder

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has published its annual Internet Crime Report. 791,790 complaints were made to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) in 2020, which is a 69% increase from 2019. More than $4.2 billion was lost to cybercrime in 2020, an increase of 20% from 2019. Since 2016, there have been reported losses to cybercrime of more than $13.3 billion.

In 2020, the most reported cybercriminal activity was phishing, which accounted for 30.5% of all complaints to IC3. 2.45% of complaints were about business email compromise (BEC) attacks. Business email compromise scams involve compromising a business email account through social engineering or phishing and using the account to arrange fraudulent transfers of funds. While these incidents were far less numerous than phishing, they were the biggest cause of losses. $1,866,642,107 was lost to BEC attacks in 2020. 2020 saw a 19% reduction in BEC attacks compared to 2019, although losses increased by 0.1 billion.

In 2020, cybercriminals exploited the COVID-19 pandemic to scam businesses and individuals. IC3 received more than...

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