Fraud alerts 2016

Scam emails and online extortion - 3 May 2016

Fraudster attempts to gain access to client account

Fraudsters are continuing to hack into email accounts and are sending fake instructions to practice units instructing client funds to be sent to newly-notified bank accounts controlled by the fraudsters.

In a recent variation, the email received by the practice unit instructed that half of the proceeds from a transaction be sent to the fraudster’s account.  The email confirmed that the balance of funds should be paid to the original (correct) account. This approach appears to be a way of adding credibility to the fraudulent email.

Firms are asked to be aware of the above threats and to ensure that no payments should be made following an email instruction without reliable verification

Scam emails

These continue with recent variations including:

  • Emails to a solicitor apparently from another solicitor in the same area, attaching a fraudulent  invoice
  • Many emails received by unqualified staff of one firm titled “Notice of Legal Proceedings “or “SUMMONS TO WITNESS”.  The email has a word document attached with the recipient’s name as the title.  Emails received feature various sender names and email addresses and feature the words “attorney” and “subpoena”.

Firms should highlight these current threats to staff along with a reminder not to click on email attachments from unknown sources.

Online extortion scam

The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) have issued an alert to make businesses aware of a current online extortion scam targeting UK businesses. The alert document includes advice on how to deal with an online extortion attempt against your business.

Read the NFIB alert.