$25 Million Deepfake Scam: The Ultimate Con?

deep fake

Last modified on June 19th, 2024

February 2024: Arup, a British multinational victim of deep fake fraud, loses $25 million. Fraudsters used deep fake technology to create a fake videoconference and trick an employee into making fraudulent wire transfers. This attack stunned companies and organizations worldwide. Sophisticated, combining AI and high-level identity theft, it is the culmination – and proof – of the entry of fraud in a cyber-era. 

The evidence is clear: having the right tools to fight back is no longer an option, but a necessity to protect businesses from the domino effects of fraud.

A new kind of fraud

The Hong Kong-based company was the target of a new kind of scam, featuring employee voice and video deepfakes. A team member was scammed during a fictitious videoconference, apparently bringing together several of his colleagues. Suspicious at first, he was eventually convinced by the realistic pre-recorded deep fakes. The fraudsters had gathered employee videos from YouTube for months to create these ultra-realistic deepfakes.

Technology, the ultimate shield in the fight against cyber fraud

How can we be up to the challenge and protect ourselves effectively against cyber fraud? By doubling up on defences:  against cyber risks and against their financial effects.

Companies should continue to invest in firewalls, anti-malware and intrusion detection systems to protect their networks and data against cyber attacks. In fact, 68% of them invested in this type of equipment in 2023. But this first security layer is not enough. If cybercriminals break through it, they can easily embezzle funds. So it’s just as crucial to invest in fraud prevention solutions like Trustpair to prevent financial losses resulting from cyber fraud.

Trustpair automatically verifies third-party bank details and transactions in real time before they are executed. This dual defence ensures that even if cybercriminals infiltrate a company’s systems, fraudulent transactions are blocked before they result in financial loss. In the case of the $25 million deep-fake fraud,  our prevention system would have automatically raised the alarm in the face of attempted transfers to unknown bank accounts. The attack would have failed despite the success of the initial deception.

To conclude: finance managers, now is the time to take action!

Investing in technological solutions is a must-have to ensure the long-term survival of companies. Automation and AI offer robust solutions capable of real-time control with unrivalled precision, minimizing the risk of errors and fraudulent intrusions.

The $25 million fraud should serve as a warning. Companies can no longer afford to wait around. It’s up to CFOs to convince their management team and take the lead in investing in the right technologies. Let the $25 million deepfakes remain the exception, not the rule.

To block the financial effects of cyber fraud, contact a Trustpair expert!

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