Be Extra Vigilant During the Holiday Period

As the summer months are now in full flow, business owners and staff will be looking forward to some well-earned time off with friends and family however, as outlined in the below from Barclays, businesses must remain vigilant when handling payments during this time of year. Staff may be heading off for holidays, but ‘scammers’ don’t take a break.

Avoid Summer Fraud

CEO impersonation, invoice fraud and email misdirection continue to be the most popular threats affecting small businesses, with fraudsters duping clients into redirecting payments to their accounts using these methods.

Heightened vigilance is essential especially during season holidays. Fraudsters are known to take advantage of the opportunities that arise when payment authorisers are away from the office, and the probability of a successful scam is higher than usual.

Tips on How to Prevent Scams

To prevent scams, please follow your established processes and internal controls in order for staff to stop an attack. Training of staff should be a hallmark of any organisation, they’re the strongest line of defence.

The following top tips will go a long way, please highlight these to your staff where you have a suitable opportunity:

  1. You should always adhere to the agreed processes and practices for approving and handling payments. Don’t take shortcuts even in exceptional situations, such as being in a hurry – fraudsters will play on this and apply pressure
  2. Never make a payment requested in an email without verbally checking that the request is genuine. Check the contact information provided in the email against other sources and always call a known contact for verification
  3. Beware of what you share on personal and business social networking sites, and on the business website. Advertising information within out of office notifications could give fraudsters the detail they need to trick staff members, and use pressure tactics
  4. Fraudsters will impersonate telephone and broadband providers, requesting to download software to resolve an IT issue. This allows them remote access to the workstation where they use false screens to disguise what they’re actually doing in the background, such as accessing accounts through Online Banking channels.

Cyber Fraud Webinars from Barclays

Barclays have developed Cyber Fraud Webinars to help you: Cyber Fraud Awareness and Cyber Security Training. They are free of charge and can be watched by anyone – yourselves, members of staff. A lot of the content might surprise you and could save you a lot of time, money and heartache – you work hard to earn the money, so make sure you protect it!

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