Attempts at cyber wire fraud globally, via emails purporting to be from trusted business associates, have surged in the last seven months of 2016, the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation said in a warning to businesses as it bid to curb such crimes.
Fraudsters sought to steal some $5.3 billion through schemes known as business email compromise, the FBI said in a report released Thursday by its Internet Crime Complaint Center.
That's up from a total of $3.1 billion reported as of the end of May, according to the survey of cases from law enforcement agencies around the world, in which cyber criminals request wire transfers in emails that look like they are from senior corporate executives or business suppliers who regularly request payments.
The total number of business-email compromise cases almost doubled from May to December of last year, rising to 40,203 from 22,143.
U.S. victims jumped to 22,292 by December 2016, from 14,032 in May 2016, and non-U.S. victims of such crime numbered up to 2,053 by December 2016 against 1,636.
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