Scammers stole record amounts of money from Australians last year. Image: Shutterstock

Australians lost a whopping $850 million to scammers in 2020 – the largest ever amount in a single calendar year.

The sobering figure was published in the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) annual ‘Targeting Scams’ report.

ACCC deputy chair Delia Rickard said the amount sadly doesn’t even fully cover the dollar amount of scams.

“Last year, scam victims reported the biggest losses we have seen, but worse, we expect the real losses will be even higher, as many people don’t report these scams,” she said in a statement.

“Unfortunately, scammers continue to become more sophisticated and last year used the COVID-19 pandemic to scam and take advantage of people from all walks of life during this crisis.”

Australians made around 444,000 reports of scams to various government agencies and banks last year while losses…

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