Push payment fraud occurs when a fraudster deceives a consumer or an individual at a business to send a payment to a bank account controlled by them.
Once the payment has been made to the account controlled by the fraudster, real-time payment schemes mean that the account can be emptied as soon as the funds are transferred and the money cannot be reversed once the fraud has been identified.
The push payment fraudsters use social engineering to make the requests appear legitimate, this may be through gaining access to the victims email account or by calling them and pretending to be a representative at a bank etc.
Examples of Push Payment Attacks on Individuals
An invoice is sent to the victim that appears to be legitimate and relates to something familiar to the individual. The payment is made for the invoice to the account provided, however, that account is one owned by the fraudster and not a legitimate account.
The account of the individual is taken over by the fraudster who makes a push payment to new payees.
Push Payment Attacks on Property transactions
Large sums of money are involved within property purchases and transactions which makes them particularly attractive to fraudsters.
A push payment attacker intercept emails between the seller/buyer and the estate agents and solicitors and enabling them to change the payment bank details for the funds to be transferred to the fraudsters account rather than the legitimate one.
Given the size of the amounts involved, this type of fraud can cause significant financial problems to the victim including the Solicitor, estate agent or home owner.
Push Payment Attacks – Supplier Payment Intercept
Fake invoice fraud is similar to attacks made on individuals, however this type of fraud specifically relates to businesses.
Similarly, the push payment attackers use intercept techniques to obtain information about the target that they can then use to convince a business to make payment for a legitimate invoice to a different bank account that is owned by the criminal.
Athena Forensics computer and mobile phone forensic experts are frequently involved in these types of cases and can assist in proving the point at which the deception/fraud occurred, including the account that was compromised for the attack to take place.