Moneta Group is vigilant about protecting you from online fraud, but hackers are clever and not easily deterred. Lately, there has been a significant increase in e-mail hacking. Fraudsters find e-mail-related schemes appealing and effective because e-mail is a common form of communication and provides a layer of anonymity, making it easier to leverage the trust of the client/advisor relationship.
In this type of fraud, an unauthorized person uses malware—such as a keystroke-logging program, aka “keylogging”—to take control of a victim’s e-mail account. The fraudster then monitors the e-mail account and identifies the financial institution(s) with which the victim does business. In some cases, fraudsters contact the victim’s financial advisors by e-mail disguised as the client. They ask for help facilitating a wire request to a destination that appears to be legitimate, but isn’t.
When hackers send a fraudulent e-mail to Moneta, it looks as if you are requesting the wired fund, and some e-mails even include a signed authorization form bearing your signature. So, for your protection, Moneta Group and the custodian of your assets (Schwab, Fidelity or other custodian) may call you to verify these electronic money movement requests.
Please beware of fraud online and consider these simple methods to protect yourself:
- Never e-mail social security numbers, account numbers or any other personal information unless using a secure portal, like Moneta Group’s secure e-mail system.
- Create strong passwords. For more information on how to do this, please refer to Password Security, an informative article featured on our website.