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Tuscaloosa, Ala., Is Among the Worst Cities for Fraud

The Alabama city leads the nation with a 235.3 percent increase in reported fraud cases between 2019 and 2023. The city also has 296.6 cases of reported credit card fraud per 100,000 residents.

It’s hardly surprising to find major cities Atlanta and Miami at the top of a list of U.S. cities where credit card fraud, identity theft and other forms of fraud are rampant.

But a new study from USA Today found that Tuscaloosa, Ala., is one of the nation’s hotspots for fraud and, in fact, leads the nation with a 235.3 percent increase in cases of fraud reported between 2019-2023.

The study, which used data from the Federal Trade Commission, U.S. Census Bureau and a survey, found that 9 out of 10 Americans believe fraud is on the rise, two-thirds have seen instances of fraud increase in their personal lives, and more than half of Americans have no confidence credit card companies will protect them.

In studying cases of credit card fraud, Miami was found to have the highest rate of cases reported, with 372.7 cases of credit card fraud per 100,000.

But right behind Miami sits Tuscaloosa, with 296.6 cases per 100,000 residents. Tuscaloosa also saw a 359.8 percent increase in cases of credit card fraud and identity theft from 2019-2023 — more than any other U.S. city, although the study found that fraud complaints have at least doubled in more than 120 U.S. cities during that same time period.

Credit card fraud is self-explanatory, while the Federal Trade Commission says other types of fraud most common in the U.S. are imposter scams, online shopping and negative reviews, fraud resulting from prizes, sweepstakes and lotteries, and fraud related to business and job opportunities, USA Today reported.

Atlanta led the nation in cases of (non-credit card) fraud, with 1,890.4 reported cases per 100,000 residents. Once again in second place sits Tuscaloosa, with 1,844 cases per 100,000.

The southeast, in fact, is home to the five cities with the worst rates of fraud in the U.S.: Atlanta, Tuscaloosa, Miami, Sumter, S.C., and Sebastian, Fla. In addition, Louisiana has three cities in the top 10 for the largest increase in fraud between 2019-2023.

While Tuscaloosa was found to be a hotspot for all forms of fraud, Alabama as a state only ranks in the middle of the pack, with its’ 982.8 cases per 100,000 residents just above the national average of 940.

Florida had eight different cities rank in the top 50 for cases of fraud, more than any other state, followed by Louisiana and Georgia, with five each, supporting the city-based data which shows fraud more prevalent in the southeastern U.S.

©2024 Advance Local Media LLC. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
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