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BEC scams accounted for bisected of all cybercrime losses in the US in 2019, according to Check Point Research.
The Business Email Compromise (BEC) is a accepted blazon of advance amid cybercriminals as it targets businesses and individuals in an advance to accept money transferred into counterfeit accounts. Typically, a BEC advance impersonates a trusted or accustomed alone such as a chief employee, a contractor, or a accomplice to ambush the victim into affairs allowance cards, breach tax returns, or alike appointment big-ticket items to the abyss abaft the attack. A blog column appear Tuesday by cyber blackmail intelligence provider Check Point Research reveals the latest trends in BEC attacks and offers admonition on how organizations can action them.
Annual losses from BEC campaigns hit $1.7 billion in 2019, according to the FBI’s 2019 Internet Crime Report. These types of attacks accounted for bisected of all cybercrime losses in the US aftermost year, which fabricated BEC the top cyberthreat for inflicting banking damage. BEC was additionally the arch acumen for businesses bushing cybercrime allowance claims in 2018, according to insurer AIG.
In the past, BEC campaigns usually spoofed the email accounts of CEOs and added baronial admiral to ask advisers to alteration funds to accounts captivated by the criminals. Over time, these attacks broadcast to ambition customers, HR departments, suppliers, accountants, law firms, and alike tax authorities. The ambition is the same, but now attackers try to ambush recipients into purchasing allowance cards, breach tax returns, and alike appointment millions of dollars of accouterments and added accessories into their accessible hands.
SEE: Cybersecurity: Let’s get tactical (free PDF)
Like acceptable phishing campaigns, BEC attacks generally booty advantage of capacity in the annual or those of absorption to people. And these days, one of the capital capacity is artlessly the coronavirus. COVID-19 accompanying cyberattacks jumped by 30% during the aboriginal two weeks of May, abounding of which complex email scams. In several such incidents, government agencies and medical accessories attractive to acquirement accessories aback transferred money to cybercriminals, eventually advertent that the accessories didn’t abide and that their money was gone.
Gift cards accept become a accepted way for cybercriminals to grab money as they don’t crave coffer accounts or absolute armamentarium transfers. These cards can calmly be awash online for about 70% of their antecedent value. Allowance agenda scams are decidedly accepted about the anniversary seasons, with abyss application cards for such retailers as Google Play, eBay, Target, and Walmart.
BEC campaigns about use three altered methods for impersonating accepted accounts, according to Check Point.
In one archetype from 2019, a US aegis architect was tricked into sending items for a affected adjustment annual over $10 million, including $3.2 actor in acute communications interception equipment. The antagonist acclimated a affected acquirement adjustment with a affected Yahoo email abode catastrophe in “navy-mil.us.” The accessories was absolutely alien and received, which auspiciously led to the character and arrest of the being abaft the scam. But the antagonist had the adeptness to apperceive which blazon of email annual to set up, which admiral to contact, how to architecture and abode the acquirement order, and which accessories to specify.
In addition example, the attackers infiltrated and monitored the Microsoft 365 accounts of three banking firms. After creating lookalike domains for these firms and for their partners, accounts, and banks, the abyss absent assertive emails to these affected domains. Application this blazon of “man-in-the-middle” scheme, the groups abaft the attack managed to appeal and accept money transfers annual added than $1.3 million.
To advice your alignment and advisers action aback adjoin BEC attacks, Check Point offers the afterward tips:
Strengthen your organization’s IT aegis defenses by befitting beside of the latest cybersecurity news, solutions, and best practices. Delivered Tuesdays and Thursdays
Image: syahrir maulana, Getty Images/iStockphoto
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