What is a Business Email Compromise Scam?

Posted: July 26, 2023

It doesn’t always take a complicated malware or ransomware attack to break your business. Sometimes it’s as easy as someone sending you an email and pretending they have authority over you. Compromising a business email is one of the most common and easy hacking attacks to pull off, so you should be aware of how to put a stop to it.

Defining Business Email Compromise (BEC)

Other threats might require technical skills to pull off, but BEC is not one of them. BEC is when a hacker or scammer convinces the user that they are someone within the company with authority, like an executive or administrator, and asks them for funds. The worst part is that these requests actually work a lot of the time.

 In 2020, the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre received reports of almost $30 million in losses to BEC scams and over $26 million in losses were reported in the first half of 2021 alone.

How It Works

The biggest thing to keep in mind is that it’s remarkably easy for a hacker to research your organization, look into who might be a good target, and spoof an email address. Social engineering tactics like these can pay off for hackers with relatively limited time investment.

More dangerous types of BEC do exist, and they can generate even more revenue for hackers. Hackers can effectively break into legitimate email accounts for an executive or administrator with the intention of finding legitimate reasons to contact people. The convincing request, therefore, appears to be authentic, and an eager employee might jump the gun and fulfill the request without thinking about it.

What’s the Best Approach to Stop It?

Like with most cybersecurity-related issues, we recommend you take two different approaches that work in tandem with each other to keep your business safe. First, implement the best security tools out there that protect your network from the myriad of threats out there. Second, train your team on how to identify and address potential threats. Don’t just do it at the time of hire, either; make sure you reinforce it over time.

Digital Sky Solutions can help your business ensure that it’s as best protected from cyber threats as possible. To learn more, call us at (250) 483-5623.

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