October 14, 2020
Since the start of the global pandemic, we’ve seen a sharp uptick in new COVID-19-related phishing and fraud scams. Posing as a public health agency offering fake government benefit payments, fraudsters and scam artists are evolving their tactics and it’s important for businesses to take note. With more employees working remotely due to COVID-19, companies need to prioritise data security and ensure remote employees are following best practices. Doing so lowers the chance of a data breach that could put an entire organisation at risk.
Here are three types of fraud that have recently gained popularity as well as tips to avoid falling victim:
Government Relief Scams
With the pandemic forcing many organisations to turn to government aid, fraudsters have tried to take advantage by posing as government officials and third-party companies offering to help fill out applications and use that as an opportunity to glean financial information. This type of fraud often takes the form of unsolicited calls, emails and texts offering advice, relief or assistance. Without the proper training and security measures in place, remote workers could be especially vulnerable.
How to Avoid Government Relief Scams
You don’t know who you’re communicating with if you didn’t initiate contact. Never respond or click on suspicious links or attachments and never give out personal or financial details in relation to the company if asked.
C-suites and small business owners should ensure there is a policy in place for employees receiving suspicious requests, even if it seems like it’s coming from a reputable source.
Business & IT Email Scams
Business and IT email scams have only gotten more frequent since the start of the pandemic. Economic upheaval has led to an increase in unusual financial transactions for businesses, such as expedited orders and cancelled deals, which can make emergency requests from higher-ups more realistic. This problem is only amplified with employees working remotely unable to walk down the hall to inquire first-hand.