Aussie businesses have lost $2.8 million to email scams in 2018

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has revealed a surge in the number of scams involving fake emails from businesses.

The watchdog’s Scamwatch division is urging businesses to be on alert for such scams after reports grew by a third over the year – totalling $2.8 million in lost funds, with an average loss of nearly $30,000.

Business email compromise scams occur when a hacker gains access to a business’s email account, or creates a facsimile, and sends emails to customers requesting that further payments be made to a new account, which allows the hacker to retrieve the money paid.

Alternatively, there have been reports of hackers sending an internal email to a business’s accounts team asking for funds to be transferred to a separate account, sometimes posing as the chief executive.

“This is a very sophisticated scam, which is why many businesses only realise they’ve been caught out once it’s too late,” ACCC deputy chair Delia Rickard said.

“There is a misconception these scams target just small business, however the largest amount of reports and losses came from medium-sized businesses, including one that lost more than $300,000.”

According to Rickard, effective management procedures are a key method of preventing these scams, ensuring that staff know how to deal with such an email when it appears in an inbox and by prioritising a multi-person approval process for transactions over a certain amount.

Access exclusive analysis, locked news and reports with Inside Retail Weekly. Subscribe today and get our premium print publication delivered to your door every week.

Comments

Comment Manually

I have read and agree to the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Loading...

Inside Retail Polls

Retail Outlook 2019
How are trading conditions for you in 2019?

Twitter

Aligning your brand with a social or environmental cause that you and your customers truly care about is very good… https://t.co/r2IiOojtmc

1 day ago

How underpayments could lead to an overhaul in industrial relations. https://t.co/Ux3Mbd09Yh

2 days ago

The conglomerate's Officeworks and Bunnings businesses delivered earnings increases, while Kmart Group struggled to… https://t.co/bMFKAgdcZH

2 days ago
x

SUBSCRIBE
FREE NEWS BRIEFS Get breaking news delivered