Taskforce to combat 'bogus boss' scams formed

There's something called 'CEO fraud', or 'bogus boss' – a type of scam that's become so popular lately that Home Secretary Theresa May had to assemble a special taskforce to combat it.

No, nothing like the Avengers, I'm afraid.

The 'bogus boss' is a type of phishing scam in which the scammers target a member of the accounts team, saying they're acting on behalf of the CEO, and that a super-secret takeover of a business is happening, which is why they need to transfer a certain sum of money from the company account.

All of this happens very quickly, the victim gets flooded with emails and phone calls, forcing it to act quickly and without second thought.

Security specialists Palo Alto Networks found that more than a third of senior UK employees (35 per cent) don’t understand online security risks, saying businesses should be extra careful, as ‘bogus boss’ is ‘here to stay’.

The company also noted that companies are not in the clear over who’s responsible for a successful ‘bogus boss’ attack – 40 per cent believe IT is responsible, while 24 per cent would lay the blame on the CEO, even if the person has no clue what’s going on. Interestingly enough, no word on the accounting team.

"With two-thirds of people not yet on board with the reality of everyone having a role to play in preventing cybercrime, it is clear there is an opportunity for organisations to put cybersecurity education front and centre in 2016. The findings suggest that too many still see cybersecurity as something done for the business, not something that everyone must follow," said Greg Day, CSO and VP of EMEA at Palo Alto Networks.