FIDI has called on its membership to take protective action over an increasing number of ‘phishing’ scams targeting the moving sector, including attacks on senior industry people.
Phishing is the criminal practice of sending emails pretending to be from authentic companies or people, usually to extract passwords, credit card numbers or money.
According to the organisation, at least two serious incidents have occurred since the FIDI Conference in April. These include fraudulent emails to FIDI’s Finance Manager, asking for an urgent money transfer to a conference supplier; and a member of the FIDI Board paying out £2,000 in response to falsified emails purporting to be from the FIDI President.
FIDI’s Secretary General, Jesse van Sas, said: ‘Our finance department received these emails, which appeared to have been sent by me and looked very legit. Luckily, we have strict payment processes and payments are only made against approved invoices, and must be verified and co-signed, to avoid such issues.’
He added that Affiliates should be aware that online scams were becoming increasingly sophisticated, and they should ensure they take action to protect themselves, including having ‘healthy suspicion’ of all emails asking for money and verifying who the true sender is.
‘Never assume things, always verify, even when emails seem to come from the top,’ he said.
FIDI Board member Gordon Bell said: ‘If something looks suspicious, especially when it has to do with a favour or money, go to the source, double check, and call if necessary. Don’t be shy to ask; even if it turns out to be an authentic request, you will have done your due diligence.’
You can find more information on what precautions to take about cybercrime in this FIDI Focus feature. The next issue of FIDI (Focus September – November 2022) will examine this issue in more depth.