No one thinks they'll fall for a financial scam and lose thousands of their hard-earned dollars — until it happens.
In 2016, the Federal Trade Commission received almost 1.3 million complaints related to fraud. In those complaints, people reported losing over $744 million to the scammers.
And for young people, scams can be particularly dangerous.
According to a 2017 survey by First Orion, millennials were six times more likely to give away their credit card information and twice as likely to give out their social security numbers than older generations, even though they received fewer scam calls as a group.
The Better Business Bureau found similar results in a study of more than 2,000 adults — people ages 18 to 24 were three times less likely to recognize a scam than their older counterparts. And, people ages 25 to 34 were most likely to report losing money.
If you do get scammed, law enforcement is unlikely to be able to get those dollars back, retired FBI Special Agent Jerri Williams tells CNBC Make It.
"When it comes to these type of frauds and schemes, in most cases, there is not going to be anybody around who will be able to investigate it," she says. "When they are investigated, it is for the purpose of convicting and charging the violator, and getting your money back is very seldom a focus."