BBB identifies top scams using new 'Risk Index'

Michigan's attorney general's office is out with its annual Top 10 list of consumer complaints.

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. - We all know scams have gone high tech -- but according to the new Better Business Bureau Risk Index, the riskiest scam is the face-to-face home improvement scam.

The BBB has all the details in the Scam Tracker Annual Risk Report.

According to a press release, the report provides, "comprehensive insight into scams based on the more than 32,000 reports made to BBB Scam Tracker in 2016."

Noted within the data:

  • Men were more vulnerable than women in seven of the top ten scam categories; and consumers 18-24 are the most likely to lose money to a scam.
  • Younger consumers have a lower median loss than people in their top earning years, partly because the types of scams aimed at older consumers tend to have higher median losses.
  • While seniors also tend to lose more money than Millennials when they are scammed, they fall for scams far less often.

The biggest takeaway? No one is immune from the risk posed by scams.

The BBB Risk Index measures risk along three dimensions:

  • Exposure (how likely are you to be exposed to the con?)
  • Susceptibility (if you are exposed, how likely are you to lose money?)
  • Monetary loss (if you do lose money, how much is it likely to be?)

Exposure X Susceptibility X Monetary Loss = Risk Index

The riskiest top five scams overall are:

  1. Home improvement scams
  2. Fake checks and money orders
  3. Employment scams
  4. Online purchase scams
  5. Advance fee loan scams

Download the full report by clicking here.

Consumers and businesses are urged to report all scams to BBB Scam Tracker at BBB.org/scamtracker, whether or not money is actually lost.

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Kayla Fortney is a digital producer at WZZM 13. Have a news tip? Email news@wzzm13.com, visit our Facebook page or Twitter.

© 2017 WZZM-TV


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