FBI Issues New Warning to Businesses About Phishing Campaigns

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In a recent Public Service Announcement dated February 21, 2018 entitled “Increase in W-2 Phishing Campaigns,” the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) issued another alert about an increase in phishing campaigns since the beginning of 2018.

According to the FBI, “IRS’s Online Fraud Detection & Prevention (OFDP), which monitors for suspected IRS-related phishing emails, observed an increase in reports of compromised or spoofed emails requesting W-2 information. Sometimes these requests were followed by or combined with a request for an unauthorized wire transfer.

The most popular method remains impersonating an executive, either through a compromised or spoofed email in order to obtain W-2 information from a Human Resource (HR) professional within the same organization.”

We continue to warn clients about these old phishing schemes that continue to be successful. Adding the FBI warning into the conversation shows the magnitude of the problem. Awareness of the schemes by human resources, payroll and finance personnel, and heightened vigilance continues to assist companies from becoming victims.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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