FBI, This Week: Criminals Put Holiday Spin on Internet-Facilitated Schemes


December 7, 2017

The FBI says criminals put a holiday twist on the methods they use to scam you online during this time of year.


Audio Transcript

Mollie Halpern: The FBI says criminals put a holiday twist on the methods they use to scam you online during this time of year.

This is especially true of two of the top-reported fraud schemes resulting in financial losses in 2016.

Confidence scams—which include romance scams—involve criminals trying to form online relationships and then try to rip you off. Jason Levitt of the Intellectual Property and Criminal-Cyber Integration Unit says the lies may sound like…

Jason Levitt: “I'm just trying to get home for the holidays—can you help me?” “I just want to get some gifts for my child this year, but I was laid off.” These are all confidence schemes that, through the holiday season, can actually lead to bad things for good people.

Halpern: The second scam is business e-mail compromise, which targets accountants and other business employees who perform wire transfer payments. Scammers request fraudulent payments as well as personally identifiable information and W-2 forms.

Levitt: Because your accounting professional might be on vacation taking some extra time during the holidays, be extra aware that during this time of year, people will take advantage of those vulnerabilities to expedite payment processes. So business e-mail compromise is absolutely on the rise.

Halpern: Learn ways to protect yourself at www.ic3.gov or www.iprcenter.gov. With FBI, This Week, I’m Mollie Halpern of the Bureau.

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