24 Feb 2019 Year In Review
2019 was a year of growth and learning for the Cybercrime Support Network (CSN). The entire team at CSN is dedicated to our mission and serving those impacted by cybercrime. It is an honor to work with each and every one of them.
CSN launched our Cybercrime Victim Hotline 211 efforts in three states; Rhode Island, Michigan, and Florida. Over 3.8 million residents have 24/7 access to cybercrime recovery support specialists. Since the launch of FraudSupport.org, the site has served over 400,000, giving people immediate access to recovery and reporting resources when faced with cybercrime and online fraud. Although the CSN team and our partners have accomplished so much in 2019, we have only scratched the surface in relation to the needs of the millions of Americans impacted each year.
As we move forward in our mission to reach and support victims of cybercrime, it has become apparent that our work is giving the victims of cybercrime a voice. There was a clear need for a uniform response system for victims of cybercrime. Through the development of FraudSupport.org and our work with our United Way and 211 partners, we are filling that gap. CSN and partners have secured funding to expand the Cybercrime Victim Support Initiative statewide in North Carolina, New Jersey, Mississippi, and Alabama with funds from the U.S. Department of Justice Victims of Crime Act (VOCA). In Q1 of 2020, millions more American victims will be able to call/text/chat with a live 211 call specialist and get the support they need to report, recover, and reinforce their security.
The victims we have served to date are reaching out for help with financial purchase scams, cyberbullying, identity theft, and more. Seeing the need, CSN expanded our recovery resource database to include targeted resources for older adults, caregivers, children, and teens, along with our ever-growing resources for small businesses and individuals. Since the launch of FraudSupport.org on November 14, 2018, our database of resources to help victims recover and reinforce their security has expanded to fit the changing needs of cybercrime victims. We plan to continue working to adapt to new threats and create additional recovery resource hubs, including resources for military personnel and their families.
One of our greatest challenges in 2019 was spreading awareness of the 211 and FraudSupport.org resources. We found that some victims of cybercrime do not identify themselves as a victim of a crime. Not only do we need to educate the public about the 211 service, but general cybercrime and online fraud education are also needed in the communities being served. In order to spread the message, the CSN team has spoken at colleges, conferences, senior centers, business groups and other events across the nation. To reach a broad audience, CSN made social media outreach, blogging, and creating web content a priority in 2019. Engagement is growing, and CSN’s work receives over 9.6 million views a month over numerous platforms.
As a nonprofit in its early stages, beginning less than three years ago, I am incredibly proud of the huge strides our team made in 2019. This important work could not be done alone, but with the incredibly smart and dedicated partners, team members and sponsors all coming together for a common cause we will be successful! Each time we go out to speak to an audience, we hear so many sad stories of victims who did not find what they needed during their time of crisis. The need is clear, and our vision is crystal clear. I cannot wait to see what the next year brings for our team and those we serve as we continue on our mission to give victims of cybercrime a voice alongside our wonderful board members, partners, sponsors, and collaborators. Their ongoing support is the key to success in our mission.
I am truly grateful for the opportunity to be on this journey with so many special people.
CEO and President