National Crime Agency warns novice and veteran traders alike of rise in clone company scams
UK watchdog organization the National Crime Agency warned the public about “clone company” attacks increasing in popularity, tricking both novice investors and veteran traders. The threat actors seemingly target those seeking investment opportunities to recoup some finances lost by the economic complications of the Covid-19 pandemic. The FCA reported that the scams are on the rise, and increased rates have been recorded since the UK initially enforced lockdown measures in March.
According to Action Fraud research, investors have been scammed out of $107 million in total since March, and this figure is expected to rise. Average losses are £45,242 per victim. The scams are more sophisticated than typical phishing emails or fraudulent social media links. The scammers are using the same name, address, and Firm Reference Number issued to legitimate companies by the FCA and then conducting phishing through social media as well as cold-calling victims.