Fraud: how I was scammed and you could be too | FT

Authorised push payment frauds, where people are tricked into transferring money into criminal-controlled accounts, are growing fast, with £354mn stolen last year. FT journalist and fraud victim Joe Sinclair talks to readers about how they’ve been duped and what the banks, customers and businesses should be doing about it

A journalist working for the financial times should know how to handle their money but i threw away 4,300 pounds with the press of a button thank you very much this is my decorator harry i’ll let him explain what happened i didn’t send you any unless you paid the invasion pay the funds i didn’t receive the funds so what happened was that email i sent you was intercepted

By a fraudster and then sent to you so what they done they changed the bank details their sin is here he pays run count authorized payment scams are one of the fastest-growing types of fraud is where you’re tricked into paying money into a criminals account it might be a fake invoice afford to impersonate in your bank on the phone or even an online romance scam

354 million pounds was stolen in this way last year it took me a while to find out but because i pressed the button on the payment i was liable even though i paid from a barclays account to another barclays account which the criminals controlled and drained after i wrote about if the ft many readers got in touch with their own stories comments and questions we’re

Going to hear some of those stories ask what more the bank should be doing and learn how not to get duped this is kelly taylor and her nine-year-old daughter isabella and this is their dream home but they’re not living there because kelly paid her 89 thousand pound deposit into a scam account after her solicitors email was intercepted and changed ever since she’s

Been battling to get her money back is there any hope that you will one day be able to move into that new home got hopes i wouldn’t say high hopes very low hopes but my philosophy in life is don’t give up and and i will try not to so every day i wake up and i just think i can do this i can’t give up try to give up and then my friends and family pull me back and say

Don’t you got to do this because i want to look at him in his eye in court and just think how much he ruined my life you’ve totally destroyed me destroyed my faith in humanity but there are a lot more nicer people in the world than these horrible people that are hackers and scammers and hopefully they get their comeuppance what comes around goes around our stories


Of remarkably similar in that the emails were sent as part of a chain and they came from a genuine email address and i didn’t realize like you didn’t realize that something like that could could be intercepted and changed because i’m a victim i’m innocent i’ve done nothing wrong except to just do what i was told in an email send this money and that’s it i haven’t

Done anything wrong and all i want is my money back kelly believes the bank should do more to question people making large payments at the point of transaction whether that’s online like me or in person at the branch like her the banks themselves have delayed a step that could stop these frauds okay so we’re up here on the ft roof with the city of london behind us

It’s the home of the uk’s big banks and claire you’ve been campaigning for action on this what what should the banks do about it what i think could really make a difference is for the banks the regulators and the payments authorities to act together fast to introduce something which has got a very boring name confirmation of payee technology but a very important

Role now at the moment if you pay somebody online you’re putting their sort code their account number but crucially not their name there’s a space to put something as a reference but the bank doesn’t take any notice of that now under confirmation of payee you would get a green tick to confirm that the person who you think you’re paying is actually the person who

You think you’re paying because it seems obvious to me that the level of these frauds and deceptions can be so sophisticated the banks really cannot expect to just pin it all on the customer for much longer one victim’s son got in touch to show how he’s fighting back against scammed phone calls i’m on my way to be a former police firearms officer who was tasked

With protecting the one family but he got in touch because he said we couldn’t detect his own family his dad from common fraud and now he wants to do something about cambio in the northwest doesn’t look like a tech hub but a team of business friends here is developing an app called people that uses artificial intelligence to identify fraudsters it’s designed to


Hang up on anyone who might be pretending to be from your bank or the police who’s trying to get you to move money into their own account so here i’ve got a couple of photographs of my dad in the army second world war obviously so that’s him sitting at the front simon got the idea after his aging father was scammed out of six hundred and fifty pounds by a hoax

Caller it may not sound like much but it had a profound impact he found it difficult to answer the phone after that he found it difficult to to go help on occasion as well after that because he lost confidence in his ability to judge what was happening it’s a very sad thing and he handed me a huge amount it attacks people where they feel most secure which is in

Their own home and it’s not a physical attack it’s an emotional attack and that hurts just as much and i’m determined that with this product we can and will have an effect weakens we can do something about this problem because no one else appears to be so you’re going to show me the app i’m going to pretend to be a fraud yet you’re going to be my victim i am let’s

Try hello hello there if that mr. smith yes hello i’m calling from your bank oh um i just wanted to check because there’s been some fraudulent activity on your account really yes and i need you to take some action immediately that calls terminated the red text has been allocated a high risk and its associated almost certainly with the kind of speech pattern that

Fraudsters are using on a daily basis and it will pick up stresses such as we need to act fast it will pick up the tone of voice the change in the tone of voice industry body uk finance sister investing billions into tackling economic crime and a new voluntary code of conduct will make it easier for victims to be reimbursed they say the technology to implement

Confirmation of payee is not as simple as it sounds and it’s vital that we get it right in my case barclays said it had acted quickly to try to recover the funds and that no bank does more to protect customers but what about the scammers themselves in my case they moved the money out of one account and then the next the banks won’t tell me anything more because

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Of data protection rules it’s up to the police to investigate further we did a little digging ourselves and here’s what i now know a google search locates the bank in chester but fraudsters often use mule accounts set up by legitimate customers who are either tricked into taking part or do so willingly the pdf of the invoice was wiped of its metadata but we can

See that it was made with some pretty expensive software that can only run on a corporate server and the email supposedly from perry was actually routed via austria though it’s likely the criminals were using a vpn to shield their actual location so it could have come from anywhere so it’s not easy to follow the money but we can say that this appears to have been a

Fairly sophisticated operation and these operations are often hard to defend against it’s a domino effect i’d already paid wages i would invest in the materials so i had paid money out of my pocket and i’ve not got a large bank balance you know i’m a small company as you know a few guys around me we’re not a big outfit in the firearms unit i went against the most

Dangerous people in the country so i could rationalize violence i could deal with it in my head what what i couldn’t understand and what i couldn’t rationalize was the way my father was victimized it preyed on his decency in it and it preyed on his vulnerability they need to say here’s our account details on heavy paper not through email something like that when

You send a package out with their exact account details then you should send a pound over then they confirm they received a pound and then you send the rest of the money i’ve been struck by how many people are spoken to have been affected by this sort of crime friends relatives and colleagues yes we should all check the bank account details in person with whoever

We’re paying and yes businesses big and small have a responsibility to protect their email accounts but i believe the bank should shoulder their share of responsibility too you

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Fraud: how I was scammed and you could be too | FT By Financial Times

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