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SMALL BUSINESS NEWS

Sep 2019

 

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Online Scammers Target Businesses

Businesses should be aware that they are the prime target for online scammers.

 

In August of 2019 the FBI arrested 14 suspects on a 252-count federal grand jury indictment.  Eighty(80) defendants were charged with defrauding victims of up to $10 million.

 

Scammers used compromised email accounts to convince businesses and individuals to make payments that were either bogus or were similar to legitimate payments the company would make.

 

In 2019 the FBI received nearly 14,000 complaints reporting Business Email Compromise (BEC) scams with losses totaling around $1.1 billion.  This was similar to the losses seen in 2018.

 

According to the FBI scammers are effective because they learn about key personnel in companies who are responsible for the payments as well as the protocols necessary to perform wire transfers in various companies and then target businesses that regularly perform wire transfer payments.

 

Entrepreneurs should be aware of this kind of fraud and take steps to protect their businesses.   Monitor what you pay for and when and to whom payment is due.  Limit the number of individuals who are authorized to make payments on the companyís behalf.  Donít make rush payments.  Investigate when payment information changes (such as new bank account to wire payments to.).

 

Be aware that other entrepreneurs can pose a threat as well. 

Sources:
FBI [Massive International Fraud and Money Laundering Conspiracy Detailed in Federal Grand Jury Indictment that Charges 80 Defendants]
FBI [FBI Warns of Dramatic Increase in Business E-Mail Compromise (BEC) Schemes]
FBI [International Business E-Mail Compromise Takedown]

By Wendy Stewart

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 

 

  
 

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