FBI provided further data related to Email Account Compromise, according to the feds, the number of business email account (BEC) and email account compromise (EAC) scam incidents worldwide reached 78,000 between October 2013 and May 2018.
“Business E-mail Compromise (BEC)/E-mail Account Compromise (EAC) is a sophisticated scam targeting both businesses and individuals performing wire transfer payments.” reads the announcement published by the FBI.
“The scam is frequently carried out when a subject compromises legitimate business e-mail accounts through social engineering or computer intrusion techniques to conduct unauthorized transfers of funds.”
The number of BEC/EAC scams continues to grow and the techniques adopted by scammers are evolving, targeting small, medium, and large business and personal transactions.
Overall losses between October 2013 and May 2018 result in $12 billion.
According to the FBI, the number of scam incidents in the US was 41,058 resulting in $2.9 billion in losses. Feds highlighted that most of the fraudulent activities leveraged on China and Hong Kong banks as receipt of fraudulent funds.
The authorities observed that banks in the United Kingdom, Mexico, and Turkey have also been identified recently as prominent destinations for fraudulent funds.
“The scam may not always be associated with a request for transfer of funds. A variation of the scam involves compromising legitimate business e-mail accounts and requesting Personally Identifiable Information (PII) or Wage and Tax Statement (W-2) forms for employees,” reads the announcement published by the FBI.
Scammers appear very focused on the organizations in the real estate industry, from 2015 to 2017, there was an increase of 1,100% of BEC/EAC victims.
“Victims most often report a spoofed e-mail being sent or received on behalf of one of these real estate transaction participants with instructions directing the recipient to change the payment type and/or payment location to a fraudulent account. The funds are usually directed to a fraudulent domestic account which quickly disperse through cash or check withdrawals.” continue the announcement.
“The funds may also be transferred to a secondary fraudulent domestic or international account. Funds sent to domestic accounts are often depleted rapidly making recovery difficult.”
Below the BEC/EAC statistics that were shared by the FBI:
|Domestic and international incidents:||78,617|
|Domestic and international exposed dollar loss:||$12,536,948,299|
|The following BEC/EAC statistics were reported in victim complaints where a country was identified to the IC3 from October 2013 to May 2018:|
|Total U.S. victims:||41,058|
|Total U.S. victims:||$2,935,161,457|
|Total non-U.S. victims:||2,565|
|Total non-U.S. exposed dollar loss:||$671,915,009|
|The following BEC/EAC statistics were reported by victims via the financial transaction component of the IC3 complaint form, which became available in June 20163. The following statistics were reported in victim complaints to the IC3 from June 2016 to May 2018:|
|Total U.S. financial recipients:||19,335|
|Total U.S. financial recipients:||$1,629,975,562|
|Total non-U.S. financial recipients:||11,452|
|Total non-U.S. financial recipients exposed dollar loss:||$1,690,788,278|
According to a report published by TrendMicro published in January 2018, Business Email Compromise (BEC) attacks had surpassed the value of damage to enterprises in the past years and it is estimated that it could reach $ 9 billion dollars in 2018.8.
(Security Affairs – BEC, scam incidents)