Security & Fraud

Millennials Most Likely To Fall For IRS Scam

Yes, phone scams are still a thing. In fact, data indicates that consumers will receive a combined nine billion calls from known scammers this year.

And while millennials may have the upper hand when it comes to adapting to technological innovations, a new study indicates that, when it comes to the telephone, they’re more susceptible to fall for them than their elders.

The results of a survey conducted by data and phone call transparency solutions provider First Orion indicate that millennials are more likely than any other generation to give away personal information over the phone. Here are some of the key findings.

First Orion found that over 85 percent of respondents received a telemarketing call recently, while 75 percent received a call they believed to be a scam. Nearly 40 percent of U.S. consumers had been contacted by a scammer impersonating the IRS.

“Scammers are getting increasingly more aggressive — particularly around tax time,” said Jonathan Sasse, CMO of First Orion. “Last year IRS scam calls went up 3x in the two months following tax day. We can expect more of the same this year.”

First Orion found in its research that IRS-impersonation scams are the most prevalent form of consumer call fraud reported, comprising 27 percent of the whole. Other common forms were vacation scams (25 percent) and bank/credit card scams (16 percent).

And while millennials reported receiving fewer scam calls than Gen Xers or baby boomers — 73 percent versus 83 and 84 percent, respectively — they were found to be six times more likely to give away their credit card information and almost twice as likely to give away their social security number to a scammer over the phone.

Likewise, nearly 17 percent of millennials reported that they were likely to give away personal information over the phone once a caller had verified the last four digits of their social security number. Only 3.2 percent of Gen X and 2 percent of baby boomers felt the same.


New PYMNTS Report: Preventing Financial Crimes Playbook – July 2020 

Call it the great tug-of-war. Fraudsters are teaming up to form elaborate rings that work in sync to launch account takeovers. Chris Tremont, EVP at Radius Bank, tells PYMNTS that financial institutions (FIs) can beat such highly organized fraudsters at their own game. In the July 2020 Preventing Financial Crimes Playbook, Tremont lays out how.

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