Kingston Police share details on recent AI fraud scam

Photo by Jack Sparrow.

As artificial intelligence (AI) technology grows, so too do the ways cybercriminals run fraud scams. To this end, Kingston Police have shared details on a convincing AI fraud that fakes an entire video call.

“In fact, the scammers were able to steal over 200 million Hong Kong dollars by emailing an employee and pretending to be their organization’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO),” Kingston Police stated.

According to a release from Kingston Police, the fake CFO asked the employee to make a secret financial transaction. The employee reportedly initially dismissed the email as a phishing attempt. But later, he was lured into attending what he believed was a video meeting with the organization’s CFO and other employees.

“The meeting attendees looked and sounded exactly like coworkers that the employee recognized, but they were all deepfakes. The scammers used AI technology to create believable video and audio of the CFO,” police said. “After the meeting, the employee was convinced that the financial request was genuine, and he sent the payment as requested.”

In the release, police noted that AI technology is moving forward at a prolific rate.

“As AI scams continue to become more realistic, it’s more important than ever to learn how to spot them!”

Police offered the following tips to avoid falling victim to an AI scam:

  • Always be wary of requests that are being sent in an unusual way. Receiving a secret financial transfer request, even from a CFO, isn’t likely genuine!
  • Trust your instincts. Immediately report any suspicious requests or emails to your organization’s security team so that they can investigate them.
  • Cybercriminals typically try to get you to act impulsively. Always stop and think before taking action.

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