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Back Jul 21, 2020

Protect Yourself from Wire Transfer Fraud


Never trust wiring instructions sent via email without confirmation. Cyber criminals are hacking email accounts and sending emails with fake (but convincing) wiring instructions.  Once a Wire Transfer is sent, it is typically not recoverable.

Are you being scammed? Common wire transfer scams include:

    • Utilities - A scammer tells the consumer that their utility (power, water, cable, etc.) will be shut off if they do not
      send money or gift cards.
    • Relative in Need - A scammer poses as a consumer's family member, often a grandchild, and claims that they
      need money for an emergency.
    • Failure to Appear for Jury Duty - A scammer poses as law enforcement, claiming a consumer failed to appear for
      jury duty, and now has a warrant out for their arrest. The scammer directs the consumer to purchase prepaid debit
      cards or gift cards, and provide the card numbers over the phone to prevent the consumer from being arrested.
    • Lottery or Prize - A scammer tells the consumer that they won a lottery or prize and must send money to claim it.
    • Debt Collection - A scammer poses as a debt collector and uses threats to make the consumer settle the fake
    • Purchases, Sales, and Leases - A scammer tells a consumer that the consumer must send money to complete a
      purchase, sale, or lease.
    • Employment Related - A scammer poses as an employer, gives a consumer a fake offer of employment, and tells
      a consumer to send money in connection with the offer of employment.
    • Online Dating Related - A scammer poses as an online dater, contacts a consumer who is dating online, and asks
      for money as a gift to help with an emergency.
    • Secret Shopper - A scammer sends a consumer a check with a letter telling the consumer to deposit a check. The
      scammer then tells the consumer to go to various stores and purchase items, to wire money to the scammer, and
      not to tell the money transmitter why they are wiring money.
    • Advance Fee Loans - A scammer poses as an online lender and after the consumer submits a loan application,
      the consumer is directed to wire processing payments to the lender. Once the consumer wires the money, the loan
      is never received.
    • Updated Wire Instructions - Hackers target emails with wiring instructions. Then, they use this information to
      send a modified email with updated directions for wiring money into their personal account.

Did you do the following to avoid Wire Transfer Fraud?

    • Validate new payment instructions received via email - even if the email is internal.
    • Pick up the phone, whenever possible, and speak directly with the individual requesting a funds transfer.
    • Contact the vendor or client directly, by phone, to confirm any requests for payment method changes, validating
      the changes are legitimate before processing.
    • Carefully review all payments before they are sent and ensure all correspondence is validated.

If you suspect wire transfer fraud, please contact us immediately at (833) 301-NFBK.