Californians Lost More Than $620 Million To Online Scam Artists In 2020 | #datingscams | romancescams | #scams

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – In 2020, Americans lost $4.2 billion to online scam artists, with Californians suffering the greatest losses compared to the rest of the country.

According to a recent study by the identity verification website Social Catfish, state residents lost more than $621 million last year, three times more than scammers earned in 2017, and the age group with the largest loss growth was 18 to 39-year-olds.

Theresa Bebee was recently the victim of an online scam. She lost her job last month and was searching for new employment on Facebook Jobs.

“First thing I see matched my qualifications. Oh, this is great,” she said.

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Fraudulent offer letter provided to Theresa Bebee, a victim of an online scam. July 22, 2021. (CBSLA)

The very next day, Bebee received a text asking for an interview. It lasted three hours and was all done online.

“Everything was by the book,” Bebee said. “Nothing seemed odd to me.”

Video: Californians Lead The County In Millions Lost To Online Scam Artists (CBS Los Angeles)

Californians Lead The County In Millions Lost To Online Scam Artists

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She was offered the job and during the onboarding process, done online, she provided everything from her driver’s license to her social security number and banking info to what she assumed was her new employer. It turns out, though, there was never a job and the scammers used Bebee’s identity to make a fraudulent unemployment claim.

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“Get this, they put the late date of employment as 2020. So, they wanted 15-months backpay,” she told CBSLA.

The most common scams reported in the study were business ..

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