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Cybercriminals are focusing on previously successful internet scams to defraud businesses and individuals in the United States out of more money than ever before, according to the FBI’s annual report on cybercrime. Meanwhile, ransomware continues to take a big financial toll on victims. Businesses and individuals lost $3.5 billion to cybercriminals last year while reporting more incidents of internet crime to the FBI than any year previously, according to the bureau’s Internet Core Competency Certification (IC3) 2019 Internet Crime Report, which was released on Tuesday. The results demonstrate that cybercrime is flourishing despite increased awareness of cyber-scams and improved security products. People reported 467,361 complaints of cybercrime to the FBI in 2019—an average of nearly 1,300 incidents every day, and more than 100,000 more than the year prior, according to the report. The success of cybercriminals in 2019 may be the results of their doubling down their efforts on scams that have already proven successful rather than inventing new ones, said Donna Gregory, the chief of IC3, in a press statement. Phishing and similar ploys, non-payment/non-delivery scams and extortion were the top crime complaints reported to the FBI in 2019. She said that rather than see instances of new types of fraud, instead the FBI saw cybercriminals honing their skills with scams they know work — improving their approaches to make it more difficult for victims to detect or defend against…

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