Cost of phish­ing, loan scams rises

In survey, fss finds da­m­ages now reach $246 mil­lion per year

JoongAng Daily - - Business & Finance - BY LEE HO-JEONG ojlee82@joongang.co.kr

Women in their 30s were more vul­ner­a­ble to phish­ing scams while males in their 40s were the big­gest vic­tims of loan fraud, a study by the Fi­nan­cial Su­per­vi­sory Ser­vice (FSS) showed yes­ter­day.

The fi­nan­cial au­thor­ity said it was the first time that it has an­a­lyzed the dam­age caused by fraud in de­tail, in­clud­ing vic­tims’ age, gen­der, job, re­gion and the type of fraud per­pe­trated.

The study was based on 70,859 cases of phish­ing that oc­curred be- tween Oct. 1, 2011 and June 30, 2014, and 13,915 cases of loan fraud com­mit­ted be­tween April 18, 2012 and June 30, 2014.

The FSS said it de­cided to con­duct the study be­cause fi­nan­cial da­m­ages caused by the scams have been grow­ing at an alarm­ing rate. Ac­cord­ing to the watch­dog, phish­ing and loan fraud re­sults in da­m­ages of about 270 bil­lion won ($246 mil­lion) a year.

In the past three years, younger peo­ple were more vul­ner­a­ble to phish­ing scams than older peo­ple, the survey said. Those in their 30s topped the list, ac­count­ing for 28.2 per­cent of the to­tal num­ber of phish­ing vic­tims, whereas those in their 70s or older ac­counted for 9.1 per­cent.

Women were more likely to fall vic­tim to phish­ing scams, mak­ing up 54.3 per­cent of the to­tal.

The study also showed that most of those women were in their 20s or 30s who and lived in Seoul.

The re­port also showed that women are suf­fer­ing much larger losses from fraud than in the past. In 2012, the av­er­age fi­nan­cial loss to a woman in her 30s from a phish­ing scam was 11.6 mil­lion won a year. That fig­ure had grown to 18.7 mil­lion won as of June this year.

Men, on the other hand, have seen the da­m­ages from those scams de­crease from an av­er­age of 11.5 mil­lion won two years ago to 10.5 mil­lion won as of June.

But men in their 40s topped the list of vic­tims of loan fraud, closely fol­lowed by men in their 30s and 50s. Women were less ex­posed to loan fraud than men, but even among women who were vic­tims, most were in their 30s.

By oc­cu­pa­tion, of­fice work­ers made up the big­gest por­tion of loan scam vic­tims, at 54.8 per­cent, while 31.6 per­cent were self-em­ployed en­trepreneurs with a small business or shop, such as a restau­rant.

Most of the vic­tims, 63.2 per­cent, wanted to bor­row loans to spend on daily ne­ces­si­ties, while 19.7 per­cent were in­ter­ested in tak­ing out a loan to re­pay fi­nan­cial debt.

About 97 per­cent of suc­cess­ful loan frauds were car­ried out via phone calls or spam sent through mo­bile phone text mes­sages; 68.1 per­cent were through mo­bile ad­ver­tise­ments; 28.5 per­cent were text mes­sages; and 1.5 per­cent were via In­ter­net ads.

The most loan fraud cases oc­curred in In­cheon, with 177 cases, fol­lowed by Gang­won and South Chungcheong. By re­gion, the fewest loan frauds, 108, oc­curred in Jeju.

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