According to data analyzed by the Atlas VPN research team, Americans lost more than $160 million to COVID-19-related scams since the start of 2020. U.S. citizens reported over 118,000 fraud cases to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), with 49.2% of those reports indicating a financial loss.

The report shows that:

  • Americans lost $160.75 million to COVID-19-related fraud in 2020.
  • U.S. citizens reported over 118,000 fraud cases, with 49.2% of those reports indicating a financial loss.
  • Median losses per report are $303.
  • Most losses are due to travel or vacation scams, amounting to $47.89 million.
  • Online shopping scams swindled $22.62 million from unsuspecting victims.

E-mail phishing scams lured out $23.52 million YTD. According to the FTC, more than 10 thousand reports mentioned e-mail as the way scammers initiated contact with victims.

COVID-19-related phone calls and messages accounted for $21.55 million in losses. Phone scams are mentioned most often, with nearly 14 thousand reports since the start of the pandemic. Close to 8,000 Americans initiated the first contact themselves, which resulted in $13.99 million losses.

Other, less common communication methods ripped-off $8.37 million from unsuspecting consumers, with 1.3 thousand reports, as stated on the FTC’s official website.

To see the full report,  click here.