Whether you’re buying a home or paying a business, there is one big thing you need to do before wiring money.
The latest scam WINK News has seen locally is called business email compromise.
A hacker gets access to a business email account and waits quietly in the wings.
When a request for a wire transfer goes out to a client, the scammer strikes.
They’ll send a second, almost identical email, claiming the bank account has changed and you need to wire to this new account.
But, once you do, your money is in the bad guy’s hands.
So what is being done to protect you?
Some businesses are including little warnings in their original emails.
“A lot of businesses now will send,” said Lt. Chad Parker, with the Financial Crimes Bureau at Collier County Sheriff’s Office. “When they send the ACH instructions, they say this is the only instruction you are going to receive. If you receive a follow-up email with a change of instructions on where to send the funds, you need to contact us right away.”
But the one way you can always protect yourself and your money is to pick up the phone and call the business directly before you wire your funds.
Tell them you received an email and confirm the bank account and routing number. Because if you wire the money to the fraudster, you are not going to get it back.