FRAUD: Local business loses $11,500 in email scam

TUESDAY 3.08am: A SOUTH Lismore business owner said she is now being extra cautious with email invoicing after she lost around $11,500 in an online scam.

The local company was going through their usual motions with suppliers when they were caught up in a cyber scam in May this year.

"We received an invoice via email - 90% of our invoicing comes by email - it was from one of our suppliers, and the invoice was a legitimate invoice," the business owner said.

"We then received another email the next day, with the same signatory and from the same email account or looked to be the same account, all the names were correct, everything was on there, saying to hold all payments as they were undergoing an internal audit."

About a week after receiving this email they received another email stating the company had changed bank details.

"We paid that money into the new bank details and we sent our remittance advice as we do via email."

It was almost two weeks after the initial email she realised something had gone horribly wrong.

"Within five minutes of finding out we were straight onto the bank to try to stop it," she said.

"At first the company thought they had been hacked but are now saying they were cloned."

Senior Constable David Henderson said an investigation into where the money went is currently been undertaken.

"We will do some requests about where the money has gone, so we can do some inquiries at the banks to that account," Snr Const Henderson said.

While Snr Const Henderson has seen this type of scam before he said it is not very common.

"This one is targeted at small businesses, if they get a request to change their account details, I would suggest they actually call their supplier and just confirm that you want to change the details ."



TUESDAY 8.30am: A LISMORE company has lost more than $10,000 to a fraudster via email.

The local company has used another company to supply them with trade goods, Senior Constable David Henderson said.

The victim received emails from their supplier, asking that account payments be made to a different account as they were being audited, snr const Henderson said.

The supplier has actually had their email account 'cloned' and the payments made by the victim had gone to a fraudster.

The supplier had no knowledge their account had been hacked and cloned, snr const Henderson said.

The victim was defrauded well over $10,000.

"If you do payments via email and a supplier asks you to changes the way accounts are paid, it could be worth your while to call them and confirm," snr const Henderson said.

"I would suggest you physically call them and not use email."

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