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BBB Study: Online scams hit consumers harder than ever: up 87% since 2015

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Online scams are hitting consumers harder than ever. That from a new report from the Better Business Bureau. Tactics used by scammers have shifted drastically during the past several years, with online scams rising by 87% since 2015

The new report, “Start With Trust Online: BBB Online Scams Report”, analyzes the changes in how scams are being perpetrated, including new information about impersonation and online purchase scams. The research is based on two things: analysis of reports submitted to the BBB Scam Tracker and a recent survey from July of 2022. Here’s Troy Baker, Better Business Bureau Serving Western Michigan Educational Foundation Director. says the big influx to doing business online of course grew once the pandemic hit.

“What we found in doing the research since then. Is that there wasn’t a shift back to more traditional means once things started to open back up. Scammers found that sweet spot online and they’re taking full advantage of it.”

Baker says and uptick of 87 percent rise in online scams is high. He says its due in part because consumers have become very comfortable with doing a lot of work online from banking to shopping.

“But at the same time, those phone scams we used to talk about, phone companies are doing a beter job of identifying them as potential scams. they’re doing a better job so they’ve shifted to the areas that are easier to get to people, and that’s online scams and those text messages.”

While online scams are on the rise… the tips to combat scams remain the same.

Baker says research before spending, use a credit card and remember if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

You can find more information at BBB.org.

Jennifer is an award winning broadcast news journalist with more than two decades of professional television news experience including the nation's fifth largest news market. She's worked as both news reporter and news anchor for television and radio in markets from Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo all the way to San Francisco, California.
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