Thursday, August 13, 2015

Public Advisory from Winnipeg Police Service about Executive Email Scam

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Executive Email Scam
Recently, the Winnipeg Police Service has received numerous reports in which the perpetrators fraudulently obtain monies from local businesses or organizations.

The basic scheme involves the following:
  • The scammer obtains the email address of a company executive (appears through open source, a company website perhaps) and then creates an almost identical email account. (may contain or drop a “. “ between first and last name for example)
  • The scammer sends an email to an employee within the company responsible for paying bills. (may also be obtained through the company website)
  • The scammer impersonates the company executive and directs the employee to pay a large invoice and provides directions or how to make the payment. (usually an wire- transfer)  The scammer will usually insert details about the urgency of the matter and being out of the office or in a meeting and can’t be disturbed.
  • The employee assumes the email is from their superior and follows the directions.
  • The wire-transfer is later discovered to be fraudulent but it is oftentoo late and the money is lost.
The Winnipeg Police Service recommends scrutinizing internal emails and incorporating a secondary means of verification (ie: phone call, proper internal paperwork) for money transfers in addition to an email to authorize payments.

Anyone that has fallen victim to this scam is encouraged to contact the Winnipeg Police Service to make a report.

This scam is occurring across North America.

For information on how to protect yourself from fraud please see: