Contact: Paul Bresson
FBI National Press Office
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) National Press Office (202)324-8783

Contact: Craig Butterworth
National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C) (804)967-6208

For Immediate Release March 31, 2009

IC3 2008 Annual Report on Internet Crime Released

The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), a partnership between the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C), released the 2008 Annual Report on the number of Internet crime complaints received.

The 2008 Annual Report states that complaints of online crime hit a record high in 2008. IC3 received a total of 275,284 complaints, a 33.1% increase over the previous year. The total dollar loss linked to online fraud was $265 million, about $25 million more than in 2007. The average individual loss amounted to $931.

Year Complaints Received Dollar Loss
2008 275,284 $265 million
2007 206,884 $239.09 million
2006 207,492 $198.44 million
2005 231,493 $183.12 million
2004 207,449 $68.14 million

While the complaints consisted of a variety of fraud types, non-delivery of merchandise and/or payment ranked number one (32.9%). Internet auction fraud was the second most reported offense (25.5%) followed by credit/debit card fraud (9.0%).

The report details information related to the volume and scope of complaints, complainant and perpetrator characteristics, geographical data, most frequently reported scams, and results of IC3 referrals.

FBI Cyber Division Assistant Director Shawn Henry said, “This report illustrates that sophisticated computer fraud schemes continue to flourish as financial data migrates to the Internet. It also underscores the need for continued vigilance on the part of law enforcement, businesses, and the home computer user to be aware of these schemes and employ sound security procedures.

Director Don Brackman of NW3C stated, “The report demonstrates that in a technology driven global market, the inability of consumers to distinguish between legitimate and fraudulent activities poses a serious threat to our economy. The financial losses that result have an impact on each and every one of us.

The report is posted in its entirety on the IC3 website.

About IC3

The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) is a joint operation between the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C). IC3's mission is to serve as a vehicle to receive, develop, and refer criminal complaints regarding the rapidly expanding arena of cybercrime. The IC3 gives the victims of cybercrime a convenient and easy-to-use reporting mechanism that alerts authorities of suspected criminal or civil violations. For law enforcement and regulatory agencies at the federal, state, local and international level, IC3 provides a central referral mechanism for complaints involving Internet related crimes.