Call center scammers looted $10bn last year from U.S.

The Deccan Herald, citing FBI data and other articles, reports that call center scammers operating out of India took in $10bn last year from victims in the U.S.

Americans lost a total of $10.2 billion in 2022 so far, which is a 47 per cent increase from 2021's $6.9 billion, to such fraud calls.

FBI's South Asia head Suhel Daud told the publication that \"romance-related\" frauds reported were worth Rs 8,000 crore in 2021 and Rs 8,000 crore in the last 11 months of 2022. Losses due to "tech support" crimes were as much as $3 billion in the last two years – $347 million in 2021 and $781 million in 2022 so far.

It may not be a national security concern yet, but the reputation (of a country) is involved, and we don't want India to suffer on that count," Daud told the publication.

Directing anger at the scammers or the Indian authorities is all well and good, but it's futile, and the best way to stop this is on the U.S. side—but U.S. telcos treat it as a PR problem. Spoofing numbers is only part of the scam, but it's a telling one because it shows the indifference to problems requiring technical disruption to antiquated systems. That's why foreign IP calls can spoof numbers assigned to specific local carriers. The cost of doing nothing is completely externalized to customers, and the profit's in the bank.