BBB Scam Tracker
BBB Scam Tracker
BBB Scam TrackerSM Reporting Tool
BBB Scam TrackerSM is an online tool that enables consumers and businesses to report scams in an effort to prevent others from falling prey to similar cons. The easy-to-use tool collects and presents scam data in a searchable online “heat map,” showing users the number and types of scams and hoaxes reported in their communities.
Data & Research
As a non-partisan, neutral organization, BBB Institute is able to produce research that provides fresh insights into the scam landscape. Using data pulled from BBB Scam Tracker and other sources, we provide fresh insights by identifying the latest tactics used by scammers, creating data-driven consumer and business education materials and programs, and sharing our findings with law enforcement.
- Timely, crowd-sourced data.
- Reports verified by local BBBs.
- Neutral, non-partisan organization.
- Insights translated into consumer education and awareness programs.
- Findings shared with law enforcement.
BBB Institute partners with universities and organizations to research marketplace trends using BBB data provided by consumers and small business owners.
Learn more about collaboration opportunities.
Our BBB Scam Tracker Risk Report (2021) provides groundbreaking insights built from BBB Scam Tracker data. The Risk Report was the first research report to introduce the Risk Index, a new three-dimensional measure of scam risk based on exposure, susceptibility and monetary loss. DOWNLOAD RESEARCH
Online Purchase Scams Report (2020)
Online purchase Scams have ranked among the riskiest scams for the past three years. Additional research was conducted to better understand how online purchase scams are being perpetrated, who is being targeted, the overall impact of these scams, and how we can help people avoid losing money to them. DOWNLOAD RESEARCH
Employment Scams Report (2020)
The 2019 BBB Scam Tracker Risk Report found that employment scams were the riskiest scams for both 2018 and 2019. Additional research was conducted to better understand how employments scams are being perpetrated, who is being targeted, the overall impact of these scams, and how we can help people avoid losing money to them. DOWNLOAD RESEARCH
Exposed to Scams: What Separates Victims from Non-Victims? (2019)
To better understand the fraud victimization process and craft better interventions to reduce fraud, BBB Institute collaborated with the FINRA Foundation, Stanford Center on Longevity and Federal Trade Commission to explore the cognitive, behavioral and attitudinal differences between victims and non-victims. DOWNLOAD RESEARCH
Military Consumers & Marketplace Trust: An Analysis of Marketplace Challenges Facing the Military Community (2019) examines the tens of thousands of business complaints and scams reported to the BBB in 2018 by military consumers to analyze service members, veterans, and military families' unique pain points when engaging with businesses. DOWNLOAD RESEARCH
In our seminal study, Cracking the Invulnerability Illusion: Stereotypes, Optimism Bias, and the Way Forward for Marketplace Scam Education (2016), BBB Institute surveyed consumers in the United States and Canada to identify the stereotypes and misperceptions around scam victimization that are a barrier to effective outreach to at-risk populations. DOWNLOAD RESEARCH
In our 2018 research project with the Council of Better Business Bureaus, Scams and Your Small Business, we used survey data and Scam Tracker data to provide insights on scams targeting small businesses. DOWNLOAD RESEARCH
- Riskiest scams of 2020: Online Purchase Scams, Employment Scams, Fake Check/Money Order Scams, Advance Fee Loan Scams, and Home Improvement Scams. (Source: 2020 BBB Scam TrackerSM Risk Report)
- 2020 riskiest scams for ages 18-54, students, and veterans: Online Purchase Scams (Source: 2020 BBB Scam TrackerSM Risk Report)
- 2020 riskiest scams for military spouses: Employment Scams (Source: 2020 BBB Scam TrackerSM Risk Report)
- 2020 riskiest scams for service members: Online Purchase Scams (Source: 2020 BBB Scam TrackerSM Risk Report)
- 2020 most impersonated organization: Social Security Administration (Source: 2020 BBB Scam TrackerSM Risk Report)
- Top misperception: Contrary to widely held beliefs, younger consumers, rather than older adults, are most likely to have been scammed. Seniors, on the other hand, are more likely to lose more money. (Source: Cracking the Invulnerability Illusion: Stereotypes, Optimism Bias, and the Way Forward for Marketplace Scam Education)
- Top Riskiest Scam Targeted at Small Businesses: Bank/Credit Card Imposter Scams, followed by Directory Listing and Advertising Scams and Fake Invoice/Supplier Bill Scams. (Source: Scams and Your Small Business Report)
For additional information about specific scam types, check out the reports created by the BBB International Investigations Committee. These scam studies were conducted to give consumers and businesses a more in-depth understanding of how each specific scam works. Specifically, how scammers use social engineering and play on emotions to trick their victims.