Shoppers in Missouri at higher risk of online scams than neighboring states


FILE – In this Dec. 12, 2016 file photo, a person in Miami searches the internet for sales. Online shopping scams are on the rise as thieves look to take advantage of the increase in people shopping online during the pandemic. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee, File)

The holiday online shopping season is already underway as companies offer Pre Black Friday sales and deals in the week leading up to Thanksgiving.

But it’s not just all about searching for the best deal. A new study by Social Catfish, a company that provides identity checks and verification, expects to see online shopping scams surge this holiday season. The Federal Trade Commission found that online shopping is the top scam reported in almost every state.

Social Catfish said the most common scams are fake websites, Secret Santa contests, and giveaways on Instagram.

When it comes to victims of online shopping scams, Missouri is the seventh most scammed state in the country. The analysis came to that ranking by looking at the FBI’s 2020 Internet Crime Report. It found that victims in Missouri lost a total of nearly $116 million dollars to online scams in 2020.

That is greater than surrounding states, except for Illinois, according to Social Catfish and the FBI:

  • 6. Illinois
    • $150 million
  • 7. Missouri
    • $115 million
  • 23. Tennessee
    • $40 million
  • 32. Iowa
    • $21 million
  • 33. Oklahoma
    • $20 million
  • 34. Kansas
    • $19 million
  • 37. Arkansas
    • $17 million
  • 40. Kentucky
    • $12 million
  • 41. Nebraska
    • $11.7 million

California is the top scammed state in the country. People living there lost more than $621 million dollars to online scams in 2020, according to the FBI’s report.

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