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FBI warns consumers of increased phishing scam attempts
WASHINGTON (11/4/09)--The Federal Bureau of Investigation on Tuesday warned consumers that it has “seen a significant increase in fraud involving the exploitation of valid online banking credentials belonging to small and medium businesses, municipal governments, and school districts” over the recent months. According to the FBI, potential victims of this type of fraud will receive a so-called “spear phishing” e-mail that contains an infected e-mail attachment or a link that sends the e-mail recipient to a website that is infected. Malware which contains a keylogger program is then installed on the victim’s computer once they click on the link or attachment. The keylogger is then used to track account information, and that information is used to steal from the victim via fund transfers or to create additional accounts in the victim’s name. The FBI has found that transferred funds of funds from the created accounts are then diverted into bank accounts of individuals that have been recruited to serve as payment processors through work-at-home advertisements or job search websites. The unwitting individuals then transfer the money that arrives in their accounts to overseas locales through a wire transfer service. The FBI has advised customers that do their banking online to contact their financial institution to ensure that they are employing all the appropriate security and fraud prevention services their institution offers.


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