This week has served as a reminder that even celebrities aren’t immune to phishing attacks. TV personality Barbara Corcoran, widely known for her role on NBC’s “Shark Tank”, lost nearly $400,000 after an email scam fooled a staff member responsible for Corcoran’s finances.
It is alleged someone created an email address similar to the one belonging to her assistant. The only difference was that the email was misspelled by one letter. The email requested that Corcoran’s bookkeeper wire a total of $388,700 for a real estate deal. Since the bookkeeper failed to notice the fake email address, she completed the wiring transaction. Once the mistake was caught, the scammer who created the email account had disappeared and Corcoran has stated she won’t be getting any of the money returned. Authorities are currently investigating the situation.
Phishing attacks are on the rise with the total amount of money stolen increasing daily. Manor Independent School District, located in Texas, lost over $2.3 million dollars due to a similar email attack. However, not all phishing attacks are created equal. CNN reports that Americans lost nearly $143 million dollars last year due to online romance scams.
Clicking on unknown links, accidently installing malicious programs, or giving banking information to unverified sources are all activities to steer clear of when using the internet.
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Digital Forensics/Cybersecurity/Information Technology