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There has been a 136 percent increase in identified financial losses around the world caused by Business E-mail Compromise (BEC) attacks, says a new warning from the FBI.

The increase was seen in the six month period between December 2016 and May 2018. The scam has been reported in all 50 US states and in 150 countries. Asian banks located in China and Hong Kong remain the primary destinations of fraudulent funds; however, financial institutions in the United Kingdom, Mexico and Turkey have also been identified recently as prominent destinations.

The warning states that BEC attacks are frequently carried out when a subject compromises legitimate business e-mail accounts through social engineering or computer intrusion techniques to conduct unauthorized transfers of funds.

The real estate sector has been the most heavily targeted by BEC attackers.

Read the warning.

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