A Dublin law firm lost €97,000 in the space of a week after fraudsters intercepted emails about a mortgage redemption.
The Law Society of Ireland has today warned all firms to be wary of the bank transfer scam and is urging solicitors not to rely on bank details received by email.
An email from a solicitor to a bookkeeper stating they had verified the account details was intercepted and the bank account details were changed to that of a fraudulent bank account.
The account was in an Ulster Bank branch in Ireland and the money has since been withdrawn.
“Members of the profession are advised that as far as possible, they should not rely upon bank account details received in an email,” the Law Society said in a statement.
“However, in cases where this is done, it is imperative that the individual transferring the money is the person verifying the account details. The profession is reminded that both external and internal emails have been intercepted and the details amended.
“It is recommended that, when contacting the sender, obtain his or her phone number through the Law Directory, phone book etc. Do not use the phone number contained within the email.”