CEO email scam costs companies $2bn – CNBC

The average loss is $120,000 but some companies have been tricked into sending as much as $90m to offshore accounts, US authorities say.

Reports of CEO fraud are accelerating. Between October 2013 and August 2015, about $1.2bn globally was lost to the scheme, the FBI said, but that loss increased by another $800m in the past six months. US authorities have traced the money involved to 108 countries.

“Criminals don’t have borders and this is a global problem,” said James Barnacle, chief of the FBI’s money laundering unit. “We’re working with our criminal investigation resources, our cyber resources, our international operations divisions — which is all our legal attachés overseas — and we’re working with foreign partners around the world to try to tackle this crime problem.”

The rise in reported CEO frauds can be partly attributed to companies detecting the crime, but it also reflects the simple nature of the scheme that can be run from anywhere around the globe.

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