Gordon Sham-sey demonstrates the most common methods of impersonation fraud

Maria Nikolova

The “Fraudstars” team aims to raise awareness of impersonation fraud and to help the public avoid the traps of such scams.

Meet Richard Scam-son, Karren Shady, and Gordon Sham-sey! Together, they form the “Fraudstars” team that aims to raise awareness about impersonation scams.

The impressive lookalike CEOs are enlisted by Get Safe Online and Lloyds Bank to show just how easy it can be to fall victim to impersonation fraud. Disguised as famous faces, the trio demonstrate some of the most common methods of impersonation fraud, and how potential victims can stop scammers in their tracks.

The “Fraudstars” campaign is launched as research commissioned by Get Safe Online and Lloyds Bank into the effect of impersonation fraud on SME businesses has revealed that:

  • Impersonation fraud is costing victims an average of £27,000 each time;
  • The number of attacks has risen a huge 58 per cent in the past year alone;
  • Over half (53%) of respondents say they have experienced scammers posing as their boss, demonstrating a rise in the popularity of CEO impersonation fraud;
  • A similar number (52%) say they have experienced invoice fraud – a rising scam where fraudsters pose as known suppliers to the company and send an invoice with a false change of bank account details.

Gordon Sham-sey’s razor-sharp lookalike credentials can only get him so far in pretending to be the boss. By employing the impersonation fraudster’s kryptonite – double checking details – his scams can be foiled.

The advice holds true for countering any financial fraud. Double checking the details of an entity that contacts you out of the blue can save your finances. It is not a random occurrence that regulators urge investors to check whether a certain entity is regulated or whether it has any registration in official databases.

That said, let’s note that there are various financial scams targeting UK residents – at their workplace and outside of it. The lack of regulations for cryptocurrencies has been one of the triggers for the rise of scams related to digital currencies.

Recently published data by Action Fraud reveals that UK residents continue to experience the negative effects of cryptocurrency scams. Fraudsters will convince victims to sign up to cryptocurrency investment websites and to part with their personal details such as credit card details and driving licences to open a trading account. The victim will then make an initial minimum deposit, after which the fraudster will call them to persuade them to invest again in order to achieve a greater profit.

Between June 1, 2018 and July 31, 2018, 203 reports of fraud involving cryptocurrency were filed with Action Fraud. The total reported loss was £2,059,501.29. In some cases, victims have realized that they have been defrauded, but only after the website has been deactivated and the suspects can no longer be contacted.

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