Watch out for this ‘invoice’ email scam
Criminals are sending emails with attachments claiming to be invoices containing malware.
This can then be used to access information stored on your computer – you need to be very wary of emails that claim to contain invoices, even if they appear to be from trusted sources
Financial Fraud Action UK warned that crooks use the malware primarily to steal online banking details.
Self-employed, freelance and contract workers are particularly vulnerable because they may receive invoices regularly from a number of sources.
The attached invoice will look like a normal document or spreadsheet, but to view the file you must enable a “macro”, which is a set of pre-programmed instructions for a computer. It is this macro that installs the malware, It logs your online banking details, along with other financial information, before sending it on to the criminals who then attempt to steal money from your accounts.
Financial Fraud Action UK’s top tips:
Be on the lookout for unexpected invoices or unusual payment requests.
Avoid enabling any macros on an untrusted document.
If you’re suspicious – don’t reply to the email but instead call your supplier on the number that you have on file to check the authenticity of the invoice.
Make sure you have the latest anti-virus and security updates installed on your computer and consider using high-level macro security settings in software applications.
Ensure strong firewalls are in place to help detect malware and prevent data leaving the network without permission.
Consider using a separate computer dedicated to making online payments to minimise security risks.