FBI released the Internet Crime Compliant Center – IC3 report of 2015 last week. During the last calendar year, IC3 received 288,012 complaints and 44 percent of them reported financial loss equal to $1,070,711,522. Business Email Compromise (BEC), Email Account Compromise (EAC), and Ransomware are the hottest topics of 2015 report.
The annual report aims to promote the public awareness by aggregating and highlighting the data provided by the general public. IC3 has received 3,463,620 complaints since its establishment in May 2000. Over the last five years, 300,000 complaints have been received per year reporting millions of dollars’ losses.
BEC also called wire transfer phishing is a sophisticated scam that targets long-established relationship between businesses and foreign suppliers with regular wire transfer payments. Fraudsters compromise legitimate email accounts to instruct victims to redirect invoice remittance payments and conduct unauthorised fund transfer. The scam was first reported to the IC3 in 2010 but it has evolved and become more sophisticated since 2013. The report indicates 7,838 victims reported the loss of more than $263 million. EAC has a similar approach with BEC but targets individuals or individual professionals and 281 victims of this scam lost over $11 million.
Ransomware targets individuals and organisations and costs 2,453 victims reported to the IC3 over $1.6 million. Ryan Kalember, SVP, Cybersecurity Strategy at Proofpoint stated ransomware is the biggest difference he has seen in cybercrime trends after 2015. Ransomware has been seen in 3 percent of sample emails in 2015 but a surprising increase of 27 percent in the first five months of 2016 has been observed in comparison with previous year.
It is worth noting that these statistics address those victims who went to the authorities, but the scope of ransomware attack is more serious. David Emm, a principal security researcher at Kaspersky Lab said: “In 2015, 753,684 ransomware attacks were blocked on computers belonging to Kaspersky Lab customers”.
The report indicates that the highest number of victims belongs to the age group of 50-59 in the male population and the age group of over 60 in female people. Almost similar to the last year, 52 percent of victims are male losing $637,112,290 in total.
You can access the aforementioned IC3 report 2015 and all the previous years’ reports from the link below:
About the Author
Ali Taherian (@ali_taherian) is an enthusiastic information security Officer. He’s finished his education in information security and has recently been involved in banking software and payment security industry. Taherian is proud to be certified IBM Cloud Computing Solution Advisor and ECSA and enjoys sharing and tweeting about security advances and news.
Edited by Pierluigi Paganini
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(Security Affairs – IC3 report, FBI)