Investment scams reported to Scamwatch have cost Australians over $70 million in the first half of this year, more than the total losses reported to Scamwatch for all of 2020, and projected losses are set to reach $140 million by the end of the year.
Data from Scamwatch shows a 53.4 per cent increase in reports about investment scams received so far, up from 3,104 in the first half of 2020 to 4,763 reports so far in 2021.
In addition to taking victims’ money, scammers often commit fraud or identity theft using the information they obtained from the victim.
Cryptocurrency trading scams
“Investment scams are more prevalent than ever, and scammers are capitalising on interest in cryptocurrency in particular,” ACCC Deputy Chair Delia Rickard said.
“More than half of the $70 million in losses were to cryptocurrency, especially through Bitcoin, and cryptocurrency scams were also the most commonly reported type of investment scam,…