Fraud, Debt Levels & Educational Attainment

I’m continuing to bore you with the Federal Trade Commission’s report on Consumer Fraud in the United States.

Would it be surprising to hear that individuals with higher levels of debt are more likely to be victims of fraud?


Yes, people in debt can be desperate, and thus be more likely to fall for scams, but there is another reason–people in debt are highly targeted by listbrokers (companies that sell lists of consumers). DirectMag’s Listfinder has over 400 lists of debtors for sale. Scammers can buy these lists and target these populations for their frauds.


The good news is that, generally, educational attainment reduces the risk of falling victim to a consumer scam, but not by much.


Related post: Could Scientific Thinking Help Curb Consumer Fraud?