FBI warns of HR scam targeting workers' pay

Published: Sep. 20, 2018 at 4:34 AM CDT
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WASHINGTON, DC (WAFB) - Most people now know to be very skeptical of emails and links that are sent by strangers.

However, they may not be as cautions if that email comes from the human resources department at their job. The FBI recommends being very careful about those, too.

The FBI said cybercriminals are targeting workers across big industries and tricking them out of their pay.

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According to federal agents, the thieves often pose as HR employees trying to verify employee information. They said the workers receive an email that appears to be from their HR department asking them to update their payroll direct deposit information.

A click of the link included in the email will take the worker to what looks like the company’s platform for employee personal information but is actually a phony site controlled by scammers, who steal the worker’s username and password after the worker types them in.

With the username and password, the scammers can then log into the company’s real site and have the worker’s pay deposited into new accounts. The FBI said the scammers usually have the money redirected to prepaid cards, which allow the thieves to spend it quickly. Agents noted the scammers can even change the settings so the worker doesn’t receive a notification about the changes made to their payroll account.

The FBI warns workers should be skeptical about emails from their human resources department requesting this type of information. People are urged to not click on any links and contact their HR department to ask questions if they receive an email about their direct deposit information.

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