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BizReport : Research archives : September 02, 2014

Poll: Phone fraud tops $8 billion mark in America

According to a new report Americans are being hit hard by phone scammers - to the tune of billions of dollars lost. The report was conducted by Harris Poll on behalf of TrueCaller. The poll shows about one-third of cell phone owners never checked their bill after receiving a suspicious call while 21% 'rarely' check their phone bills post-calls.

by Kristina Knight

The survey was done in two parts in June and July of this year. Researchers found me are more likely to be targeted by scammers, but that men are also more likely to check their bills than women (32% vs 21%).

"We're seeing that a lot of smartphone owners are not taking some very essential steps to avoid becoming a phone scam victim. This amounts to huge cost in time and money if they do get scammed and need to contest charges, or worse, handle a case of identity theft," said Truecaller CEO Alan Mamedi. "Scam artists are only getting smarter about how to conceal their identity and consumers will need better and easier ways to prevent scams."

Other interesting findings from the report include:

• 64% 'never answer' calls from unknown numbers
• 31% search online for suspicious numbers before responding
• 16% use caller ID applications to identify suspicious numbers

About half of those who have lost money because of phone scams, nearly half (49%) say it was a mobile scam.

"$8.6 billion lost per year through U.S. phone fraud is simply a staggering number and shows the need for greater vigilance among Americans when it comes to protecting themselves from scam artists operating over the phone," Mamedi said. "We think the actual dollar number lost may be even higher due to factors like unreported fraud and unchecked phone bills even in instances when owners received a spam call."

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: Harris Poll, mobile marketing, mobile scams, Nielsen, phone scams, TrueCaller

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