Cyber Fraud: How can you tell who has really sent you an email? | 10/06/2016 | GenesisIT,Hull

Cyber Fraud: How can you tell who has really sent you an email?

Genesis Business Systems Blog

Fraud techniques continue to evolve as criminals look for new ways to defraud their victims. Every business is a potential target. Email fraud is increasing at a vast rate and we have helped many businesses who have already been scammed.

How can you tell who has really sent you an email? Just because an email appears to come from a known source and has a known contact in the ‘From’ field, there is no guarantee that the email is genuine. This is a method that fraudsters are using to facilitate payments from unsuspecting customers.

What is it and how does it work?

It’s very simple.

  • A member of staff in the finance team receives an email which appears to have originated from a senior person within their own organisation e.g. the Finance Director or CEO.
  • The email instructs the recipient to make an urgent payment to a specified beneficiary (this may be outside normal procedures).
  • The email appears genuine as the details in the “From” box may reflect the genuine address of the individual.
  • Believing the email to be genuine, the member of staff processes the payment, which arrives in the fraudsters accounts. The money is usually withdrawn within minutes.

This type of scam is more commonly known as “CEO Fraud” or “Whaling Fraud”. This cyber threat is becoming increasingly common as more and more businesses are falling victim to it - so it’s a quick and easy win for the criminals.

As with most types of fraud, we would recommend that you ask your staff to operate high levels of vigilance, especially those entrusted with access to your online payment systems. Always contact the person directly to confirm that they did indeed send the instruction.

To find out more about this and other cyber threats that could affect your business, join us at one our free lunch 'n' learn events in Hull or Leeds.

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