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Battle Of The Sexes: Internet Fraud Edition

They say girls develop much faster than boys. At the very least they appear to be quicker on the uptake when it comes to avoiding getting duped on the Internet.
A study from the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) suggests that men are far more likely to be duped by Internet fraud schemes than women. For every dollar that women lost to scammers, phishers, and other Net crooks in 2007, men lost a buck plus an extra 67 cents.

Last year, the IC3 -- a partnership between the FBI, the National White Collar Crime Center, and Bureau of Justice Assistance -- received nearly 220,000 complaints of Internet crime. Of the complainants, more than half (57.6%) were male and lived in one of the four most populated states: California, Florida, Texas, and New York.

Among the cons, investment scams seemed to be the one that men fell for most, where the average loss is more than $3,500. Pattern-wise, guys fell for the scams they believed would bring them in the biggest windfalls. Women, on the other hand, were more likely liable to fall for auction fraud -- but no more so than their male counterparts.

Men also tend to make up the higher concentration of victims of check fraud and Nigerian letter fraud scams.

Overall, the IC3's report is depressing (you can download the full report here). If you were hoping to hear that Internet fraud was on the decline, check back next year. Not only did it rise in 2007, but the nearly $240 million in reported losses is a $40 million increase from that stolen in 2006.

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