Top 10 Online Scams of 2012 and Prediction for 2013

online-scams-listOnline scamming has these days have become more then simple crimes these days. Criminals see them as a business more than a crime committed by them. 2012 saw a tremendous increase in the scams carried by the criminals, not only the scams got increased but they also got sophisticated too. Ordinary people faced huge losses due to this. Billions were robbed and some significant information was also stolen. Let’s have a look at top 10 scams of 2012:

  1. ATM thefts and skimming through devices: This type of crime has although dropped down a bit this year but, it’s still one of the major form of crime carried out by the criminals.
  2. Hit and run scams: This is a fraud done by carrying out campaigns on fake cause, after getting money the criminal see to run away. Usually, fake organizations are made for this.
  3. Economy-related scams: These are fraudulent schemes carried by the organization that are said to be related to the government. Loan modification scheme is one of the types of this scam.
  4. Investment scams: In this type of scam, usually online promotion is done to invest in their program and huge rewards are shown against them.
  5. Impostors/Grandparents scams: This type of scam is done by targeting the old folks, the scam schemes related to old people could be related to this type of scam. These days a popular type of scam.
  6. Nigerian and advance fee scams: These are quite clear form of scams in which advance fees are taken from the people and then being vanished.
  7. Lottery scams: This is one of the oldest forms of scams in which fake lotteries could be sold and people can be scammed.
  8. Internet sales: This type of scam has increased quite a lot during recent year. These include: selling things through free classifieds, posting fake things and then after taking payment getting vanished. Fake sites selling fake things could also be related to it.
  9. Malware: Probably one of the most popular scams of this year, a lot of damage has been done by malwares. Not only people’s systems are affected but they also have been financially hit.
  10. Phishing and identity theft: This type of scam is carried out by all the above stated scams; it’s one of the crimes of all.

For 2013, all these are predicted to get a lot more sophisticated and increased in numbers. Another crime, that is not stated above is a dating scams. Not stating it above doesn’t means that it has not been carried in the ongoing year. But, the frequency and sophistication of this crime doesn’t allow it to enter in top 10 of this year’s scams. What will make this particular scam a lot more popular in 2013, according to the scam busters:

“Increasing divorce rates from middle age onwards and the ease of seeking a new partner via the Internet for older age groups could make it a more significant source of scams. It’s an outside bet”.


Waqas

Waqas Amir is a Milan-based cybersecurity journalist with a passion for covering latest happenings in cyber security and tech world. In addition to being the founder of this website, Waqas is also into gaming, reading and investigative journalism.