As you navigate through the digital landscape in 2023, cyber fraudsters continually adapt and innovate ways to scam innocent victims. The scope for fraudsters to exploit grew exponentially this year, from subtle phishing schemes to igniting trust fires using deepfake technology.
Here, we delve into some of the most alarming fraud trends witnessed in 2023, unfolding how they have shaped and threatened our shared digital world and will likely continue to do so.
Fraud isn’t anything new, but as the economic downturn continues, more fraudsters are going to be on the move. Here are 10 fraud trends to look out for and how to protect yourself in 2023.
A disturbing trend has emerged where influencers intentionally share their fake credit card details online, inviting followers to “use” them. And while this isn’t technically illegal, it has led to an increase in false positives, authorization fees, website timeouts, and identity morphing.
As skyrocketing inflation costs gripped everyone, more consumers found themselves turning to shady online marketplaces for cheaper goods. Lawyers at Monmouth County warned about an increase in reports related to such marketplace scams, reminding us to be extra cautious.
Geopolitical uncertainty has increased compliance measures dramatically within global businesses. The aim is to prevent financial fraud, especially across borders. But this situation also led to an unfortunate rise in sophisticated scam attempts exploiting the prevailing fear.
The allure of ‘Buy Now, Pay Later’ (BNPL) schemes became overwhelming this year. These enticing credit offers also raised fraud risks significantly. Scammers started creating fake BNPL service offers to gain access to consumers’ financial data, leading to a surge in identity thefts.
Fraudsters have adapted to the strict PSD2’s enforcement. Aimed originally to boost payment security, it became an unsuspected gate for scammers. Using deceptive marketing, they trick users into providing the extra codes crucial for committing fraudulent transactions.
With the economic downturn in effect, the rate of financial fraud spiked. Anxious and desperate people became easy targets for scammers, especially through concepts like get-rich-quick schemes or promising fast recovery investments. When economies plunge, fraud rates rise.
Open AI and ChatGPTs’ multifaceted capabilities were put to harmful use. For those exploiting this technology, automated systems facilitate faster fraud attack projections, resulting in more cases of phishing and identity theft attacks. AI will be a fraudster’s best friend in the future.
Crypto exchanges found themselves in a pickle this year. With a slump in cryptocurrency sales, many had to scale down their security domain, adversely affecting fraud prevention mechanisms. This poorly timed move gave fraudsters a window of opportunity to scam.
The transition towards a decentralized internet, or Web3, allowed a new wave of unique fraud risks. Despite its perspective on personal empowerment and privacy, it also became fertile ground for scams targeting digital assets like NFTs, online identities, and wallets.
As borders reopened, a surge of airline, travel, and international merchant scams emerged. Fraudsters designed schemes around fake ticket platforms or illegitimate tourism agencies. In some cases, they pose as vendors who will pocket payments without providing any products.
As we’ve seen, the world of online fraud continues to evolve and grow more sophisticated with each passing year. It’s crucial you stay aware, alert, and educated about these trends to protect yourself effectively in 2023. The fight against cybercrime is a collective effort—we all play a part.