I heard this story on the ski lift a few weeks ago. This company almost lost $700k to fraud. Keep watching to find out what happened.
I was skiing at keystone and rode the lift up with some business guys from New York. When they heard what I do for work one of them said You’re not going to believe what happened to us!
Then he went on to say. The owner of our company had been doing some work in a coffee shop and used their free wifi. Someone there was on the network and got his password.
The password was for his Microsoft outlook which not only went to his e-mail account but to the entire company account….calendars and e-mails for everyone.
These hackers were smart. So they waited. They watched all of the company activity. And then they began to send fraudulent e-mails from different people in the company to others in the company saying that we were starting to do some business overseas and were going to transfer $700k to get things started.
These e-mails seemed like the real thing. They studied people’s patterns for sending e-mail and even their individual language patterns in the message itself. Nobody questioned a thing. Everything seemed legit.
Then the hackers figured out the CEO was on a plane-remember they had his calendar- and they sent the e-mail to the right people in the company to initiate the transfer while he was in the air.
Someone in the company picked up the phone and called the ‘sender’ of the e-mail-at least who he though sent the note from within the company and said ‘Why didn’t you tell me about this yesterday so I could be ready’ Of course this person didn’t know anything about it because all of the e-mails from him were actually from the hacker!
The transfer was stopped and they figured it out. What a close one!
How could they have prevented this? It’s easy. Get VPN software. It stands for Virtual Private Network and it does a good job hiding all of your information so you can use public wifi where these hackers can see EVERYTHING you do.
It’s cheap too. Lots of people recommend Express VPN. I use Norton. About $70/year is a bargain compared to $700k that could vanish instantly. Make sure you run a copy on your laptop and on your phone.
Have fun safely surfing the web. See you next time!