This number represents the total number of complaints that have been reported to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) since its inception in 2000.
However, in just 14 months, IC3 saw a record 1 million complaints. This represents the fastest growth of complaints in IC3’s 20-year history.
Reports of online fraud and investment fraud have accelerated in the past few years, especially since the pandemic began last March. To put things in perspective, IC3 accumulated its first million complaints 7 years after its founding. Now, within just over a year, IC3 saw one million complaints reported to its department.
While there has been a steady increase since this point, it is clear that this number is increasing at record pace.
In the past 14 months, the 1 million complaints include reports of various online and investment fraud. This number only represents the number of reported instances - this hardly accounts for the total number of instances that have gone unreported.
Consequently, it is difficult to calculate an accurate figure on the real number of cases. Many victims fail to report crimes like this for a number of reasons, including a lack of knowledge on the steps to report or simply out of embarrassment. One could only imagine the true number of fraud cases in the past year.
Although online scams have been around for quite some time, it is interesting to see investment fraud as a notable point of reference included in the FBI’s IC3 report. As we have discussed in a number of previous blog posts, investment fraud activity has drastically increased in the past year. This is a serious situation that we continue to monitor daily.
If you believe you may be a victim of investment fraud, call us at 239-314-4434 for a confidential, no-cost consultation. Vernon Litigation Group represents victims of investment fraud throughout the United States. Our firm has a solid track record of holding individuals and companies accountable for various investment fraud claims, including REITS, Ponzi schemes, alternative investments, limited and master limited partnerships, conflicts of interest, and more.