We have received a number of reports of sophisticated email-based scams. The majority of the reports advise that in the first instance email accounts are being compromised.

How are scammers doing it?

The scammers seem to be using information held in the email history. The information they glean from the history, is used to 'authenticate' the scam email, so it appears relevant to your specific circumstances. 

Scammers make the emails look genuine, and often copy the format (and branding) used by the business or person the scammer is pretending to represent. Received reports advise that emails and/or phone calls from scammers appear to come from your trusted Ulton advisor or even other professionals such as lawyers, banks, stockbrokers and financial advisors.

The background information the scammer obtains from the email history, provides them with the intelligence they need to make their inquiries seem legit.

It's very concerning

We are concerned about this trend, as these types of attacks have the potential to have long-term impacts.

Steps you can take right now

  1. Enable multi-factor authentication on any online account that has this option. For example:
    •   online email servers including Office 365, Gmail and outlook.com 
    •   online banking platforms
    •   any site that has payment details such as PayPal, Amazon and eBay 
  2. Don't reuse passwords, especially between online services.
  3. Use secure passwords — consider using passphrases instead of passwords.
  4. Consider a password manager which will store complex passwords, making it more likely that you will use different passwords.
  5. Be vigilant! It's good to have a little scepticism. 
  6. Trust your gut! If anything feels off, contact us directly.

We are here to help

If you receive a suspicious email or phone call that looks like it has come from Ulton, please contact us immediately on (07) 4154 0400.

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