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Visualizing the Companies Online Scammers Impersonate the Most

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See this visualization first on the Voronoi app.

This circle graphic shows the top companies impersonated in online scams in 2023.

The Companies Online Scammers Impersonate the Most

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on iOS or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

Globally, online scams cost consumers and businesses billions annually through the use of increasingly sophisticated tactics that steal users’ data.

Often, this involves the use of “phishing”, which is when fraudsters send messages or emails impersonating a legitimate business requesting sensitive information. In fact, this type of attack is one of the most common types of cybercrimes, owing to its high efficacy.

This graphic shows the most commonly impersonated brands by online scammers, based on data from Proofpoint.

Tech Companies Stand as Prime Targets

As the table below shows, the most commonly targeted companies are tech companies, making up six of the top seven impersonated brands by fraudsters in 2023:

CompanyNumber of Messages Impersonating a Company
Microsoft68.0M
Adobe9.4M
DHL8.8M
Google6.1M
AOL4.4M
DocuSign3.5M
Amazon3.1M

Ranking as the top company overall, 68 million messages impersonated Microsoft, outpacing second-highest company, Adobe by a wide margin.

Often, these fraudulent emails feature subject lines such as “Outlook Info Replacement” or “Message Failure Delivery Notice”, luring recipients to click on embedded links. These links then take users to a counterfeit website mimicking the Outlook login page, prompting them to input their login details. Ultimately, disclosing these details presents a security risk to individuals and organizations.

Going further, Office 365 was targeted the most across all Microsoft products, being mimicked by 20 million email threats.

This highlights how fraudsters target trusted brands where they can apply tactics of “credential harvesting”. In this way, scammers can target a Microsoft 365 account, for instance, which will give them access to an email account and other personal data.

Ranking in third was DHL, with 8.8 million impersonated messages. By targeting the courier company, fraudsters prey on recipients who may be anticipating details on package deliveries. In many cases, online scammers trick people into clicking on a link that mimics the official website, aiming to steal customers’ login information or payment credentials.

The Growing Financial Burden of Online Scams

As cyberthreats grow in prevalence, the financial costs are increasing as well.

A separate report from the Federal Bureau of Investigation found that the cost of online scams increased 22% in 2023 compared to the previous year, surpassing a record $12.5 billion in America. Overall, phishing attacks were the top source of reported crimes by individuals, businesses, and organizations by far.

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Maps

Mapped: U.S. States by Cost Per Prisoner

Spending can vary from just under $23K per prisioner in Arkansas to $307K per inmate in Massachusetts.

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In this map, we illustrate spending per prisoner across all U.S. states.

Mapped: U.S. States by Cost Per Prisoner

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on iOS or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

The U.S. has a prison population of over 1.2 million inmates.

In this map, we show the cost per prisoner across U.S. states, using data from USAFacts.

USAFacts sourced spending data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Annual Survey of State and Local Government Finances (last updated in June 2023), and prison population data from the Bureau of Justice Statistics (last updated November 2023).

Differences in Prison Spending Vary Widely Across States

More than $80 billion is spent annually on prisons in the United States.

A large part of this is used to pay over 4,000 vendors that serve the criminal legal system, including healthcare providers and food suppliers.

At the state level, most of the budget goes for day-to-day operations, including officer salaries.

In high-wage states such as California, New Jersey, and Massachusetts, officers receive double the salaries compared to those in lower-wage states like Mississippi, Missouri, and Kentucky.

As a result, spending can vary from just under $23,000 per prisoner in Arkansas to $307,468 in Massachusetts.

StateExpenditure per prisoner (USD)
Massachusetts307K
Vermont134K
New Jersey133K
California128K
Maine117K
Rhode Island117K
New York116K
Maryland114K
New Mexico113K
Washington108K
Connecticut103K
Alaska93K
Delaware91K
Nebraska88K
North Dakota84K
West Virginia82K
Minnesota80K
Oregon79K
Colorado76K
Wyoming75K
New Hampshire74K
Utah73K
Illinois68K
Pennsylvania67K
Michigan65K
Wisconsin64K
Montana64K
North Carolina63K
Hawaii62K
Virginia61K
Kansas49K
South Dakota49K
Ohio44K
Idaho42K
Iowa42K
Florida42K
Arizona41K
Nevada40K
Tennessee39K
South Carolina38K
Kentucky36K
Indiana33K
Alabama33K
Missouri32K
Oklahoma32K
Texas31K
Georgia30K
Louisiana25K
Mississippi24K
Arkansas23K

States With the Highest Incarceration Rates

Southern U.S. states have the highest imprisonment rates according to 2022 data, with Mississippi at 859 people per 100,000, Louisiana at 775, and Arkansas at 743.

Massachusetts has the lowest rate of any state, with 116 people per 100,000.

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