Public Warning Issued After Similar Frauds Lead To Significant Losses

"Financial Crime Investigators are urging members of the business community to take steps to protect their finances and business practices after receiving reports of a series of similar frauds which have each led to significant losses. These frauds, which appear to target service professionals such as lawyers, accountants and purchasing managers, use “man-in-the-middle” style attacks to undermine otherwise legitimate transactions." - VIC PD Public Warning

Due to the large purchases and amounts of money associated with construction projects the construction industry is a prime target for fraud.

Fraudsters able to represent themselves as owners and managers have been able to authorize large scale illegal transactions and are costing companies millions. 

This type of attack implies that the perpetrators have been able to gain Administrator access to the victims mail servers and create bogus accounts. As you can imagine, anyone with Administrator access to your server would be able to see, modify or redirect any e-mail in the organization to them.

WHAT CAN YOU DO:

First, ensure you've moved to SSL secured mail hosting. Modern server mitigate 'man in the middle' attacks by securing with SSL. Ensure your server does this (and not with self signed certificates).

Second, find out who has admin access to your server, and if you haven't recently, change the password to a unique password. Using the same password for Facebook, banking and your server is just begging for trouble.

Thirdly, ensure all software, both on your workstations and your servers, is current and up to date. Many hacks can be traced back to out of date or expired Anti-Virus and other security software.

Lastly, talk to a qualified I.T. Professional. Organizations like mine can help to ensure that your mail servers are secured. Things like SSL certificates, server patching and cloud hosting solutions can be very technical and a few hours of professional advice and implementation can go a long way to making your company secure.

The danger is very real, and like a job site, most accidents can be traced back to poor implementation, training and attention to detail. Be safe.

Federal Contracting Fraud Tip Line: http://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/ci-if/signaler-report-eng.html


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