In a recent announcement, the FBI said it noticed scammers switching to virtual meeting platforms matching the overall trend of businesses moving to remote work during the pandemic.

“Between 2019 through 2021, the FBI IC3 has received an increase of BEC (business email compromise) complaints involving the use of virtual meeting platforms to instruct victims to send unauthorized transfers of funds to fraudulent accounts,” the FBI said.

As explained, the criminals are using such collaboration platforms in their attacks in various ways, including impersonating CEOs in virtual meetings and infiltrating meetings to harvest business information:

  • Compromising an employer or financial director’s email, such as a CEO or CFO, and requesting employees to participate in a virtual meeting platform where the criminal will insert a still picture of the CEO with no audio, or “deep fake1” audio, and claim their video/audio is not properly working. They then proceed to instruct employees to initiate transfers of funds via the virtual meeting platform chat or in a follow-up email.
  • Compromising employee emails to insert themselves in workplace meetings via virtual meeting platforms to collect information on a business’s day-to-day operations.
  • Compromising an employer’s email, such as the CEO, and sending spoofed emails to employees instructing them to initiate transfers of funds, as the CEO claims to be occupied in a virtual meeting and unable to initiate a transfer of funds via their own computer.

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