The American Gem Trade Association (AGTA) recently sent out an e-mail alert warning jewelers about a wire transfer scam targeting AGTA supplier members’ clients. In the alert, AGTA CEO Douglas K. Hucker wrote:
WIRE TRANSFER SCAM ALERT
It has come to our attention that several of our supplier member’s clients have received scam e-mails that appear to be sent from the supplier’s e-mail accounts. The messages vary but all suggest that the clients should withhold payments that are due the suppliers because of various “problems” with the supplier’s banks. They advise the clients to await new wire transfer information that will be sent to them shortly. The e-mails to the clients are fake and the “new” wire transfer information is to a bank controlled by the scammers.
It is imperative that whenever you or your clients receive a message, via any means, altering payment terms or requesting bank information, that this information should be confirmed, preferably by phone but not via e-mail, with someone at the company that is known and trusted.
The e-mails are probably a result of highjacked e-mail accounts and the fake e-mails appear to be exact duplicates of the supplier’s accounts but may also have slight alterations to the e-mail account’s name.
Please remember to exercise extreme caution when communicating or responding to messages discussing sensitive information.
Learn more about the American Gem Trade Association at www.agta.org.