The US Secret Service has alleged that Nigerian cybercriminals are targeting state unemployment funds using personal information stolen from Americans.
A Secret Service spokesperson made this known while confirming it to an International Media outfit recently.
The Spokesperson noted that over 36 million Americans have sent in their files to be qualified for the Unemployment benefit caused by the Coronavirus pandemic in the state.
He explained that criminals use stolen personally identifiable information to file fraudulent state unemployment claims.
The Service’ Image Maker added that Crooks would then use social engineering techniques to recruit unsuspecting individuals to launder illicitly obtained funds in order to conceal the identity, source and destination.
“The Secret Service circulated a memo last week warning that the criminals appear to be connected to a Nigerian crime ring and may have already stolen hundreds of millions of dollars.
“As states struggle with an unprecedented flood of jobless claims amid the COVID-19 pandemic, cyber criminals are targeting unemployment insurance sites with fraudulent claims in order to illegally siphon money.
“More than 36 million Americans have filed for unemployment in the past eight weeks as coronavirus-related shutdowns lead to layoffs across the US
“Criminals will use stolen personally identifiable information to file fraudulent state unemployment claims.
“Crooks will then use social engineering techniques to recruit unsuspecting individuals to launder illicitly obtained funds in order to conceal the identity, source and destination” The Spokesman said.
He noted that criminals have taken advantage of the chaos despite government’s struggles to meet the high demand with limited staffing and archaic unemployment websites.
The Spokesman noted that the fraudsters were primarily targeting the state of Washington, as well as North Carolina, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Oklahoma, Wyoming, and Florida.
The Agency, therefore, issued warning to Americans to remain on high alert for fraud schemes, adding that every state could be vulnerable.Follow us on social media