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Preventing Email Fraud in International Trade

Shandong and Zhejiang Province have thousands of international trade companies; this fraud causes many companies huge damage. And several clients told me that they had been cheated by this means. So I want to give full details of how they were cheated. Hoping everyone does not make such same mistakes in future.

This called “changing face fraud”, all main fraud members stayed in America, France, Indonesia, Thailand, etc. This fraud organization is highly secret, tightly organized with clear responsibility.

Fraud procedure as following, the Chinese trade company (“seller”) sells clothes to African Clothes Company (“buyer”), and then seller sends email to buyer, asks buyer to remit payment. Because there is time gap between China and African, buyer can not check email immediately, then the fraud invades buyer mailbox, and changes this email, changes the receiving bank account into fraud’s nominated bank account. Even if the buyer finds this, and asks seller “what happened?” then frauder deletes the email, prevents seller from receiving this inquire email, and gives buyer immediate reply such as “the employee or company account is changed”, then obtains the trust of buyer. If the buyer trusts this email at last, and remits payment, then the fraud is successful.

Fraud method one, by using Stealing Password Software or Trojan virus, frauder invades the traders’ mailbox. Then frauder controls the mailbox of seller and buyer; they will know the business conduction procedure between two companies.

Fraud method two, using false email: after the frauder obtains the seller’s and buyer’s mailbox, then frauder registers very similar mailbox, changes the username of mailbox, often just only one or two letters change, this is very difficult to check by seller or buyer. Then in the name of seller or buyer, frauder sends emails to receiver. If the receiver does not check the email carefully, believing frauder’s email and replies directly, remits payment, fraud is successful.

Or changes the postfix of mailbox; For example, true seller’s or buyer’s mailbox postfix is cn, but fraud’s email is con, however fraud provides whole and perfect B/L, packing list, invoice in the attachment, all this conform with normal international trade procedure, it is hard for the buyer believe this is fraud case.

Prevention method: Strengthen the safety of mailbox, does not send bank information through email correspondence; confirming the receiving bank information in written form and by the means of phone or fax;



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