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Municipality in the Netherlands Falls Victim to CEO Fraud, Losing €236,000 to Scammers

In a recent incident, the Alkmaar Municipality in the Netherlands has fallen prey to CEO fraud, resulting in a loss of €236,000 to cybercriminals. The fraudulent scheme involved a municipal employee receiving a fake invoice and being pressured by the sender to make a swift payment, which unfortunately occurred, as confirmed by the municipality. Upon the discovery of the fraud, further fake invoices were intercepted, and an investigation was initiated.

The investigation revealed no signs of internal fraud. However, it pointed out shortcomings in the administrative process regarding fraud detection and attributed the accelerated payment to the pressure inherent in this type of scam, as stated in a letter from the college of mayor and aldermen to the municipal council (PDF). Additionally, the college has implemented supplementary measures to prevent future CEO fraud attempts.

Reza Rafati

Reza Rafati, based in the Netherlands, is the founder of Cyberwarzone.com. An industry professional providing insightful commentary on infosec, cybercrime, cyberwar, and threat intelligence, Reza dedicates his work to bolster digital defenses and promote cyber awareness.