NEW YORK, June 29, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Truecaller, the world’s best caller ID and spam blocking app, today announces the results of its seventh annual “Insights U.S. Spam & Scam Report.” The research was conducted in partnership with The Harris Poll in March of 2021 and its findings detail trends on the growing number and methods of phone scams that have permeated the U.S. over the last 12 months.
According to the study, one in three Americans (31%) reported having fallen victim to phone scams, 19% on more than one occasion. This past year has proven to be the most costly year ever, with an average reported loss of $502, up 43% ($351) from last year’s 2020 report. Over the last seven years, Truecaller has seen decreases in reported spam calls — primarily in 2015 and 2019 — but these past two years have seen over 100% increase in spam calls since 2019. This year set a new record for the highest ever average amount of money lost to phone scams with a $29.8 billion loss, a 51.2% increase compared to last year’s $19.7 billion loss.
Key Findings of the Report Include:
COVID-19 perpetuated scam calls and texts:
Scammers have taken advantage of a vulnerable situation to fraud victims with COVID-19 related messages. The report saw 59% of Americans have received scam calls or text messages related to COVID-19 in the past 12 months, up from 44% in March of 2020.
Robocalls saw continued success:
Although the number of victims who lost money to robocalls fell this past year from 61.5% to 60%, it continues to be a pervasive means of fraud. A staggering three in five (60%) Americans have admitted to losing money as a direct result of a robocall. On average, Americans reported receiving 30.7 spam calls (mobile and/or landline) per month, with 21.5 of those reportedly attributed to robocalls.
Men and younger populations continue to be the most susceptible to scams with seniors increasingly victimized during and post pandemic:
The survey found that in the past 12 months, among those who have been victim of a phone scam, 59.4% of were male and 38.3% were female, while the rest (2.3%) identified as non-binary or preferred not to reveal their gender. Around 40% of men between 18-34 were scammed compared to only 10% of males aged 65+. Similarly, only 3% of females 65+ reported being scammed over the last year.
Spam blockers/caller ID is the predominant action after being scammed:
The study found that after being scammed, 44% of people in the last year downloaded a spam blocker and/or caller ID app, like Truecaller, while 31% took the inconvenient step of cancelling their credit card/changing account numbers. Around one third (31%) of those being scammed went through the process of reporting the scam to authorities.
“This year’s study has emphasized the need for efficient and accurate CallerID services and spam analytics, which our team at Truecaller delivers for hundreds of millions of consumers around the globe. We do this by balancing effective robocall mitigation with prioritization of legitimate businesses and critical communications to help protect American consumers,” says Alan Mamedi, CEO and Co-Founder at Truecaller.
The study found that 85% of Americans said they try to only answer calls if they can identify the person or business they are calling from. With Truecaller, legitimate businesses and organizations can register and brand their numbers, ensuring they aren’t incorrectly identified as spam, ensuring consumers can receive information from their schools, bank, healthcare provider, local community, and other important services.
The phone scam survey was conducted online within the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of Truecaller from March 16-18, 2021 among 2,045 U.S. adults aged 18 and older. The phone spam survey was conducted online within the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of Truecaller from March 18-22, 2021 among 2,002 U.S. adults ages 18 and older.
People use Truecaller to stay ahead. It helps them know who’s getting in touch, filter out unwanted calls and SMS, and focus on what really matters. The company provides a suite of unique services such as a dialer that offers caller ID, spam detection, messaging and more. Truecaller’s mission is to build trust everywhere by making communication safe and efficient. Headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden, the company was founded in 2009 by Alan Mamedi and Nami Zarringhalam. Investors include Sequoia Capital, Atomico and Kleiner Perkins.
About The Harris Poll:
The Harris Poll is one of the longest running surveys in the U.S. tracking public opinion, motivations and social sentiment since 1963 that is now part of Harris Insights & Analytics, a global consulting and market research firm. We strive to reveal the authentic values of modern society to inspire leaders to create a better tomorrow. We work with clients in three primary areas; building a twenty-first-century corporate reputation, crafting brand strategy and performance tracking, and earning organic media through public relations research. Our mission is to provide insights and advisory to help leaders make the best decisions possible. Learn more at www.theharrispoll.com.