TL;DR: Just because there are more tech-savvy people around, it doesn’t mean the number of social media fraud victims is declining. According to new data from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the number of users who reported being swindled through sites like Facebook and Twitter reached a record 95,000 last year, with total losses reaching a massive $770 million.
The FTC writes that 25% of all reported losses to fraud in 2021 were those that originated from social media platforms. The most recent figures mark an eighteenfold increase over 2017 reported losses, but they are likely to be much higher as many people are too embarrassed or ashamed to report being scammed.
Scammers love social media platforms. The sites offer a multitude of ways to con money out of people and are a cheap method of reaching billions of potential victims. Many criminals utilize the personal information publicly available on the platforms, and they can target people via scam ads that are pushed to those with specific interests or who fall into certain demographics.