Friday 19 January 2018

Irish businesses targeted in massive €5m invoice fraud

€5m targeted in massive invoice redirection fraud at Irish businesses
€5m targeted in massive invoice redirection fraud at Irish businesses
Brian O'Reilly

Brian O'Reilly

GARDAI have issued a warning this afternoon after a spate of ‘invoice redirection frauds’ were reported by Irish businesses.

The scam typically begins when a business receives an email or letter from an existing creditor notifying them of a change in bank details.

The scammed business then pays the next invoice payment into the fraudulent bank account.

Gardai say no pattern has been detected so far – payments have been processed in various financial institutions both here and in the UK.

Over €5m has been targeted, but vigilance of financial institutions meant only €100k of it has so far been successfully stolen.

Banks were able to halt the transfer of some of the funds, and recovered some funds that was scammed, preventing the full targeted €5m being stolen.

14 cases have so far been reported to gardai.

The Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation is requesting that all businesses conduct an immediate review of any instructions that they have received from customers involving a request for a change of account details.

As a security precaution it should be confirmed by verbal contact with the relevant financial control person in each business that purportedly sent change of account instructions as to whether they were genuine instructions or not.

Where any business suspects that such an attempt was made or indeed where they have received such a request they should immediately contact their local Garda station and their bank.

The Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation are liaising closely with the Banking and Payments Federation of Ireland over the fraud.

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