Non-violent crime where the perpetrator is trying to scam people out of money is known as a white-collar crime. The term came about in the 1930s due to these financially motivated crimes being committed primarily by people who worked white-collar jobs such as bankers, insurance agents or any similar desk position that was seen as being respectable.
What’s an example of white-collar crime?
White-collar crime usually involves scams or theft of large sums of money. Fraud is the most common type of white-collar crime.
Fraud can be anything from an average email scam to filing taxes incorrectly. Email scams are typically the most common form of fraud that’s seen today when people solicit financial account information or funds via email.
Insider trading is another example of white-collar crime, which usually happens when non-public information is used about a company to give them an advantage in the stock market. There are also investment scams where the fraudster gets someone to invest in an idea, and then the perpetrator runs with the money.
How common are white-collar crimes?
White-collar crimes are very common but not widely reported. Most of the common white-collar crimes impact people on an individual level, such as being scammed via email or having their identity stolen and used to make fraudulent purposes.
Some intricate white-collar crimes involve entire corporations or multiple people. These can include selling counterfeit items or even laundering a large amount of money obtained through illegal means.
Many white-collar crimes take place online with stolen identities, so it’s possible for someone to be falsely accused of committing fraud. White-collar crimes like fraud can have serious penalties, meaning it’s vital to mount a solid defense against the charges to avoid a conviction.