Cybersafety Connections April 2021 #13

We Got Intel from ACFE Insight! 

Be In the Know 

  • The Federal Trade Commission Consumer Sentinel Network 2020 Data Books 
  • Report Types and Categories 
  • Fraud Reports by Payment Method 
  • Fraud Reports by Contact Method 
  • Reported Fraud Losses by Age 
  • State Rankings: Fraud and Other Reports 

Federal Trade Commission 

Yes, we have new information according to the ACFE Insights featuring Federal Trade Commission’s 2020 Consumer Reports. 

In October 2020, the Federal Trade Commision set up a website for people to report fraud and other illegal business practices. As usual this report is stored in Consumer Sentinel Network (Sentinel) which is a data base available only to Law Enforcement. The Consumer Sentinel data has an interactive version online at Sentinel also includes reports filed with other federal, state, local, and international law enforcement agencies, and other organizations like the Better Business Bureau and Publishers Clearing House. 

Report Types and Categories 

In 2020 the Consumer Sentinel Network complied over 4.7 million consumer reports which was an increase over 2019.The report type is broken down into; 


 Fraud reported was 2.2 million which made up 46% of the report with 34% suffering loss amounting to 3.3bn which is an increase of 1.5bn over 2019. 

Fraud Categories 

  • Imposter Scams 
  • Online Shopping 
  • Internet Services 
  • Prizes, Sweepstakes and Lotteries 
  • Telephone and Mobile Services 
  • Travel, Vacations, Timeshare Plans 
  • Business and Job Opportunities 
  • Health care 
  • Foreign Money offers and Fake Checks Scam 
  • Investment Related 

The categories are based on the number of reports, percentage reported number of loss, total loss and median loss. 

Identity Theft 

 Made up 26% of fraud type reported. 

Identity Fraud categories  

  • Government documents or benefits fraud 
  • Credit card fraud 
  • Loan or lease fraud 
  • Employment or tax-related fraud 
  • Phone or utilities fraud 
  • Bank fraud 

The identity theft report categories were based on theft type and number of reports. 

Top 10 Other Categories 

  • Credit Bureaus, Information Furnishers and Report Users  
  •  Banks and Lenders 
  •  Auto Related  
  • Debt Collection  
  •  Credit Cards  
  • Home Repair, Improvement and Products  
  • Television and Electronic Media  
  •  Education  
  • Computer Equipment and Software  
  • Privacy, Data Security, and Cyberthreats 

Other categories were ranked based on number of reports. 


What: 65,576 frauds were reported with military consumers losing money to fraud in 24% of the reports and this amounted to total loss of 122 million and median loss of $600 million.

Fraud Reports by Payment Method         

Payment Method                                      Total Loss (Millions) 

Credit Card  149 
Debit Card 117 
Payment Apps or Service 8.7 
Wire transfer 311 
Gift Card or Reload Gift Card 124 
Bank Transfer and Payment 314 
Cash and Cash Advance 146 
Cryptocurrency 129 
Check 87 
Money Order 26 

Payment method was ranked by number of reports. 

Of 2.2 million frauds reported, fraud by payment method is 17%. 

Fraud Reports by Contact Method 

Contact Method                                        Total Loss (Millions)           

Phone Call436
Text 86
Email 247
Websites or APP 316
Other 314
Social Media 257
Mail 46
Online Ad or Pop-up 13

Contact method is ranked by number of reports, total dollars loss and median loss. 

Of 2.2 million frauds reported, 57% was reported with contact method used. 

Reported Fraud and Losses by Age 

Age Range                                                                  Total Loss (Millions) 

19 and under 28
80 and over                                                105

Report by age based on total loss. 

State Statistics 

The top five states for fraud and other reports based on 100k population are; Neveda, Delaware, Florida, Maryland and Georgia. 

The top five states for Identity theft based on 100k population are Kansas, Rhodes Island, Illinois, Nevada and Washington. 

In both fraud and Identity Theft reports, California had the highest number of reported cases. 


For the detailed report visit;

1.FTC Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book 2020 

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