BEC scams, also known as business email compromise scams, are a form of cybercrime where attackers use email to deceive a company’s professional into revealing confidential information or transferring funds. In a typical scenario, the attacker poses as a trustworthy source and requests payment of a fake invoice or release of sensitive data that can be sold or used in another scam.

BEC scams can take many forms and it is always in the best interests of every firm to educate all personnel on these tactics. This means every employee who serves the firm using an email platform, with no exception. Many companies erroneously avoid training their executives, but with greater access to confidential data and company funds, top-tier personnel are favoured targets of BEC attackers.

Staying vigilant and informed is crucial in defending against BEC scams, but adding data encryption to your security measures can be a game changer in preventing serious breaches from happening. Learn about the common BEC scams circulating and how encrypting emails and other sensitive information can serve as a cure.

Data theft

One of the most common BEC scams, data theft, is also among the easiest to execute. A practiced scammer will begin by targeting the firm’s HR department to steal company data like a person’s schedule or direct contact number. Once this information is in their possession they can carry out spear phishing BEC attacks that use authentic information for increased believability.

However, if your company email protocols insist that when personally identifiable information (PII) is transmitted it is always encrypted with a public key only issued to recipients who have been effectively validated, the BEC attack will fail.

Fake invoice schemes

BEC scams often involve scammers posing as trustworthy vendors and suppliers, sending emails and invoices that appear to be from the third-party firm. However, the payment will be directed to a different account to steal the payment. Email encryption provides an added layer of security for businesses, allowing them to encrypt not just the email message, but also any attachments such as invoices. To protect against BEC attacks, it is crucial for companies to ensure that their third-party partners and suppliers adhere to the same cybersecurity protocols. If an unencrypted invoice arrives from a trusted source, it should raise a red flag and prompt the recipient to take action to avoid a BEC scam.

Account hacking

BEC scammers sometimes hack into the email accounts of CEOs. They rummage through inboxes for sensitive data or use the account to issue emails to employees who are unaware of the infiltration. If all emails within the user account have been protected by data encryption, the malicious actor will not be able to view any of the information included in the messages and employees receiving an unencrypted message will be instantly suspicious.

Get email encryption and prevent a BEC attack now

At Galaxkey, we have created cutting-edge email encryption that is exceptionally easy to use. Equip your team with our encryption solution via a two-week trial and prevent the possibility of a BEC-related breach today.