Businesswoman working on desk with laptop and digital tablet.

Imposters Are Targeting Executives

A new phishing and social engineering scam has emerged. Scammers are targeting companies and causing internal data, including employee credentials (logins and passwords) to be compromised and ultimately exposed.

What is Happening?

There have been reports of two scam scenarios occurring. The first is a phishing scam whereby thieves pretend to be either a CEO or a CFO’s using false email addresses. The second phishing scam scenario includes thieves that have actually obtained real CEO and CFO email credentials. In both cases, the thieves, via email addresses, are attempting to gain access to employee data by requesting W2 forms, employee records and information, as well as various internal company data.

In both scenarios, the imposters are asking lower level colleagues to send this sensitive data to them, either for their records or for a potential project underway. Without hesitation, in response to what these employees feel is a direct request from their own CEO or CFO, many have gone ahead and sent the requested sensitive information without checking the legitimacy of the request or reviewing safe email practices.

What You Can Do?

Take these proactive steps to help prevent an internal breach of data of your company. Make sure your company’s computer has up to date anti-virus, operating systems, security updates and applications .

In addition, review these email security best practices:

  • Ask yourself did you know the sender, were you expecting this email?
  • Don’t trust email headers alone, they can be fraudulent—thieves can use aliases for the “from” address displayer in your inbox.
  • Look for general greetings and no signatures, as these are common indications of scammers.
  • Be very cautious of emails with grammar errors, typos or a play on emotions.
  • Hover over any URL links before clicking on them—a link’s true destination will show.
  • Do not open attachments from people if the email looks suspicious—hackers often infect attachments with malware.
  • Double check, asking the “sender,” either in person or over the phone if they actually sent the message and if the request is legitimate.
  • Report any suspicious emails to your IT Department immediately.

Lastly, make sure you are enrolled in Privacy Armor® , InfoArmor’s identity protection benefit, and that you have activated your online account.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *