The Business E-mail Compromise (BEC) is a sophisticated scam targeting businesses working with foreign suppliers and/or businesses that regularly perform wire transfer payments. Formerly known as the Man-in-the-E-mail Scam, the BEC was renamed to focus on the “business angle” of this scam and to avoid confusion with another unrelated scam. The fraudulent wire transfer payments sent to foreign banks may be transferred several times but are quickly dispersed. Asian banks, located in China and Hong Kong, are the most commonly reported ending destination for these fraudulent transfers.
The BEC is a global scam with subjects and victims in many countries. The IC3 has received BEC complaint data from victims in every U.S. state and 45 countries. From 10/01/20131 to 12/01/2014, the following statistics are reported:
- Total U.S. victims: 1198
- Total U.S. dollar loss: $179,755,367.08
- Total non-U.S. victims: 928
- Total non-U.S. dollar loss: $35,217,136.22
- Combined victims: 2126
- Combined dollar loss: $214,972,503.30