Truecaller has launched its fifth edition of the annual Global Spam Report – a detailed, global study on how spam and scam affects all of us. The report, like the previous years, lists the Top 20 Countries Affected by Spam Calls in 2021 and is available for everyone to read on the Truecaller official blog. With the people navigating through the ongoing pandemic and countries going into a second round of lockdown, this year’s report has shown that not only has the pandemic affected communication behavior but also spam patterns around the world.
This year, Truecaller has been able to help our 300 million users around the world block and identify 37.8 billion spam calls. Part of the report closely examines the critical trends in spam and scam over the past year, highlights some important numbers, the current landscape and what one can expect in 2022.
A detailed analysis of spam calls in India
As per the Global Spam Report 2021, India has moved up in rankings from 9th to 4th position owing to a significant increase in sales and telemarketing calls. This year, all categories of sales-related calls make up a vast majority (93.5%) of all incoming spam calls.
Over 202 million spam calls were made by just one spammer in India this year. That’s over 6,64,000 calls every day and 27,000 calls every hour of every day.
Another interesting insight from the report is that one of the most common scams in the country remains the ever-popular KYC (know your customer) scam where fraudsters pretend to be a bank, wallet or digital payment service, asking for user KYC documents as mandated by the Reserve Bank of India.
Top Countries Affected by Spam
Key trends from other parts of the world
- Brazil has retained its title of the most spammed country in the world (four years in a row) with 32.9 spam calls per user per month. There is a significant gap between the average number of spam calls received in Brazil (32.9 calls per user per month) versus Peru (18.02 calls per user per month) which stands in the second position.
- The rankings look very different when you start comparing the average number of incoming spam calls v/s messages per user per month. Cameroon tops the list, followed by Somalia, Tanzania, Congo, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast and Benin. Notice a pattern? All of these are African countries. Brazil is eighth and the African countries start off again: Niger, Togo, Sudan, Ethiopia and so on. Clearly, SMS spam is a bigger problem area for users across the African continent.
- South Africa was typically one of the most spammed countries in the world: fifth in 2017, fourth in 2018 and sixth in 2019. It dropped sharply to seventeenth place in 2020 and has again jumped back up to ninth place this year.
- For calls, the US dropped from a high second place in 2020, down to twentieth place in 2021 – almost off the top 20 countries list.
- In the top 20 countries – Brazil is in a class of its own. The next 10 countries in the list are comparable in terms of number of spam calls received. And the last nine are in a group of their own, between 4.5 to 6.7 spam calls per user per month.
- This report is the result of painstaking analysis of billions of calls received by these 300 million users. Truecaller users have the opportunity to name spammers or tag calls with an appropriate business or identity, helping us assign percentages to different kinds of spam calls. No content of any call or SMS is heard or read by anyone or any machine at Truecaller. All data is aggregated, anonymised and can never be traced to any one user.