​Investigating vulnerability and reporting behaviour for consumer fraud victimization

Author(s) Van Wyk, Judy and Karen A. Mason
Title Investigating vulnerability and reporting behaviour for consumer fraud victimization
Source Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice; November 2001, Vol. 17, No.4, p 328-344
Date 2001
Document type Journal article
Summary This study examines whether younger people are more likely to experience victimisation by consumer fraud and to report this than older victims of fraud. Data for the study was obtained from a telephone survey conducted in Tennessee and respondents were asked if anyone had to attempted to victimise them through 13 specific consumer fraud types. Questions relating to risk-taking behaviour and socialisation were also asked in the survey. It was found that younger people were more likely to experience consumer fraud, both successful and unsuccessful attempts and younger people were more likely to socialise than older people and engage in more financial risk-taking behaviour. Results also showed that victims of consumer fraud were more likely to take financial risks and to socialise than non-victims. However, the results did not show that age itself, or social aspects of age influenced the likelihood of reporting behaviour. Recommendations are made for more public education programs aimed at preventing fraud and dispelling the myths that the elderly are primarily the victims of fraud.
Keywords Consumer fraud; crime prevention; vulnerability; risk-taking behaviour
Topic Non-violent crime