Sep 25, 2023

Cybersecurity risks are becoming more and more prevalent in today's digital landscape. One of the most common risks is Business Email Compromise (BEC) scams. These attacks can be devastating to businesses of all sizes, as they can result in significant financial losses and damage to a company's reputation.

What is a BEC scam?

A BEC scam is a type of cyber attack where a hacker gains access to a business email account and uses it to impersonate an executive or other trusted employee. The hacker then sends emails to other employees, vendors, or customers requesting payments or sensitive information. These emails often appear legitimate, and the hacker may use social engineering tactics to trick the recipient into complying with their requests.

Types of BEC scams

There are several different types of BEC scams, including:

  • Invoice scams: The hacker sends fake invoice to a vendor or customer, requesting payment to a fraudulent account.
  • CEO fraud: The hacker impersonates a CEO or other high-level executive and requests that an employee transfer funds to a fraudulent account.
  • Account compromise: The hacker gains access to an employee's email account and uses it to request payments or sensitive information.

It's important to note that BEC scams can take many different forms, and hackers are constantly coming up with new tactics to trick their victims.

How to protect your business from BEC scams

Protecting your business from BEC scams requires a multi-pronged approach. Here are some steps you can take:

Employee training

One of the most important things you can do to protect your business from BEC scams is to train your employees to recognize and report suspicious emails. This training should include:

  • How to identify phishing emails and other types of social engineering attacks
  • The importance of verifying requests for payments or sensitive information
  • How to report suspicious emails to the appropriate person in your organization

Strong passwords and two-factor authentication

Another important step you can take is to require strong passwords and two-factor authentication for all email accounts. This can help prevent hackers from gaining access to your employees' accounts in the first place.

Secure payment processes

If your business accepts payments online, it's important to have secure payment processes in place. This can include using secure payment gateways and requiring two-factor authentication for all payment requests.

What to do if you've been targeted by a BEC scam

If you believe your business has been targeted by a BEC scam, it's important to take action immediately. This can include:

  • Notifying your bank or financial institution
  • Changing all passwords for your email and other accounts
  • Notifying any vendors or customers who may have been affected
  • Contacting law enforcement or a cybersecurity professional for assistance

By taking these steps, you can minimize the damage caused by a BEC scam and prevent it from happening again in the future.


BEC scams are a serious threat to businesses of all sizes, but there are steps you can take to protect yourself. By training your employees, implementing strong security measures, and taking swift action if you've been targeted, you can minimize the risk of falling victim to a BEC scam.

cybersecurity risks