It's a scary thought. Losing money. Recent research suggests £1,658 per SME is lost per year from invoice fraud. Of 1,000 companies surveyed nearly half of those businesses have received a fraudulent or suspicious invoice in the last year.
It's easily done. An email or letter attaching an unknown invoice, accounts department simply pay it without asking questions. It looks official enough. False changes to bank details and duplicate invoices are also tactics used by sophisticated fraudsters.
Would you know what to do if you received a suspicious invoice?
Would you do anything at all?
Your employees must be alive to invoice fraud and other cyber crime. Be ready to recognise the signs of fraud. Encourage your employees to ask questions of suppliers, query invoices or new bank details and ensure that you are in fact paying for legitimate services.
Like any cyber crime there are no areas of industry which are immune. The recently launched Joint Fraud Taskforce shows how seriously the Government are taking consumer fraud and protection for SMEs is so important.
Vigilance is key. Most importantly if you are unsure or have fallen victim to fraudsters, make sure you report this to Action Fraud.
UK small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) are losing more than £9bn from invoice fraud every year.