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US, Canadian Authorities Save Company From $750K BEC Scam

An unnamed U.S. company was saved from losing approximately $750,000 after the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC) shared a tip about a potential business email compromise (BEC) scam with the U.S. Secret Service (USSS) Ottawa Field Office July 6, according to a press release.

“Unlike many traditional crimes, scams and fraud span over a number of jurisdictional borders,” Sgt. Guy Paul Larocque, officer in charge at the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, and Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) mass marketing and serious fraud coordinator, said in the release. “This incident is an excellent example of the importance of international partnerships and reporting to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.”

The successful result was due to the fact that a firm in Canada reported the scheme to the center last month. In turn, the center told its partners, such as the USSS, about the scheme and the related account, the release stated.

The USSS then provided the notification with contacts, which caused a bank investigator to find out that an American firm was moving nearly $750,000 to a fraudulent account. That investigator paused the transfer, reached out to firm, and started the process of reversing the money, according to the release.

“This incident is one of numerous examples of the shared successes between our agencies, resulting in millions of dollars returned to U.S. and Canadian citizens,” Special Agent in Charge Robert Lamour, USSS, Ottawa Field Office, said in the announcement.

BEC schemes are some of the scams that cause the greatest financial damages. In such a scheme, a scammer will send an email that is fabricated to make it appear to originate from a known and trusted source.

As PYMNTS previously reported, ransomware, malware and BEC attacks are becoming much more popular among scammers, and these actions can have expensive impacts on affected companies.

Firms in the United States collectively lost $1.8 billion to BEC fraud last year, making safeguarding against these and other attacks that harness social engineering essential for companies.

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