These Are The Most Common Forms Of Cybercrime In The US – From Phishing To Extortion

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New research reveals the most common forms of cybercrime.

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The research, undertaken by anti-fraud experts SEON, used data to provide a snapshot of the most common forms of cybercrime in the US.

The Most Common Types Of Cybercrime

Most Common Types Of Cybercrime

The most common type of cybercrime in the US is phishing and pharming. Phishing and pharming refer to the fraudulent practice of luring people into revealing personal information, such as passwords, login details and credit card numbers.

When carried out via email this practice is referred to as phishing, with it being referred to as pharming when the victim is directed to a fake website disguised as a legitimate one.

The second most common type of cybercrime was non-payment and non-delivery. Non-payment refers to a buyer not paying for goods or services received, while non-delivery refers to the failure to deliver goods or services that have been paid for.

Extortion is the third most common form of cybercrime. Extortion comes in several forms, with the most common being the use of ransomware to seize access to your files and devices, followed by a demand for money, cryptocurrency, gift cards or any other form of payment.

The research also revealed the countries that are the most (and least) risky for internet users. 

The Lowest Risk Countries For Cyber Threats

Lowest Risk Countries For Cyber Threats

The United States placed third in the rankings with a Cyber-Safety Score of 8.73. This high score was helped by the USA getting the highest score in the Global Cybersecurity Index (100/100) and while also performing well in terms of low cybersecurity exposure and strong legislation.

Denmark however is the most digitally secure country, with an overall Cyber-Safety score of 8.91. Denmark scored highly in both featured cyber security indices, and did particularly well on the Cybersecurity Exposure Index, scoring just 0.117.

Germany took the medal for second, with a Cyber-Safety Score of 8.76. Germany is generally very safe for internet users, as a result of its high Global Cybersecurity Index score combined with comprehensive laws and regulations.

records exposed

Further Study Insights: 

  • In 2019, it was estimated that fraud cost the global economy an incredible 5.127 trillion dollars per year.
  • The most common type of cybercrime in the US is phishing and pharming, accounting for 32.96% of all reported cybercrime in the country in 2020.
  • US E-commerce retailers now experience an average of 206,000 web attacks per month
  • Since 2005, the number of breaches in the US has risen by 537.58% to 1001 separate instances in 2020.


You can view the full research including the full Global Cyber-Safety Index by clicking here.