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White collar crime trends: Emerging trends and schemes

On Behalf of | Jun 20, 2024 | Criminal Defense

White-collar crime encompasses a variety of non-violent offenses typically committed for financial gain. Over time, these crimes have become harder to detect. As a result, the number of prosecutions for them has fallen to an all-time low, as reported by the Justice Department. So, understanding the full scope of white-collar crime is more important than ever. Doing so can help you protect yourself.


Embezzlement involves the theft or misuse of funds, often within a corporation. Embezzlers now use more sophisticated methods to conceal their activities.

New technology has caused a rise in cyber embezzlement and digital manipulation. In digital manipulation, embezzlers can use software to fake financial statements, making it harder to find errors. In cyber embezzlement, attackers use phishing and malware. They use these to access others’ accounts and steal funds.


Forgery involves falsifying documents or signatures to deceive others, often for financial gain. Advances in technology have also worsened this problem.

Some examples of forgery are digital forgeries and counterfeit documents. Improvements in scanners, printers, and digital assets make forging signatures or seals easier. This has also helped make high-quality passports, IDs, and financial documents possible. These forgeries are so realistic that they may be hard to distinguish.


Fraud encompasses many deceptive practices, from Ponzi schemes to credit card fraud. Fraudsters use many tactics to exploit vulnerabilities.

Cryptocurrency users are especially at risk. Digital currencies are new and partly unregulated. Meaning they are especially vulnerable to fraud. Common cryptocurrency schemes might include investment scams. They might also include fake initial coin offerings (ICOs). 

Fraudsters also target healthcare systems, filing false insurance claims and exploiting billing systems. Telehealth’s prevalence since the COVID-19 pandemic has further exacerbated these issues.

Identity theft

Identity theft involves stealing someone’s personal information to commit fraud or other crimes. Data accessibility online has caused identity theft schemes to evolve.

Data breaches are a primary concern. These can provide identity thieves with vast amounts of personal information. They may use this information for synthetic identity theft. This involves combining real and fake information to create new identities used for fraud.

Social engineering and phishing scams are as popular as ever. But they’re now more convincing. Individuals can use these techniques to trick others into sharing personal information online. Social media provides perpetrators with a wide range of vulnerable individuals for fraudulent interactions.

Staying vigilant against evolving threats.

White-collar crimes are becoming more ingenious and more challenging to detect. New trends in this crime show the need for vigilance and action. You should aim to stay informed to reduce the risk of falling victim to these complex schemes.