Business Email Compromise (BEC)

Have you ever received an email or a text message from what you think is a legitimate source asking you to do something unusual?

Such as:

  • Change direct deposit information in the payroll system.
  • Alter direct deposit information to pay an invoice.
  • Purchase gift cards and text the numbers to someone.

This is known as Business Email Compromise (even if it comes via text messaging). They often include a sense of urgency. Also, if they need you to perform a specific task, they will claim to be having difficulty completing the action on their own. These are attempts to steal money from you or our organization.

What should be done in this situation?

Contact the sender directly. Do not respond to the email or text message you received. The email or text you received is probably not a legitimate address or phone number. Use the telephone or some other well-known contact method. Confirm that the request was legitimate. I can assure you that 90% of the time, it will not be.