A fraudster who submitted bogus invoices amounting to £660,000 has just been jailed for six and a half years. They were found guilty of one count of conspiracy to defraud and four counts of fraud by false representation. The fraudster submitted fraudulent invoices by faking a signature from the CEO of a foreign exchange company.

The City of London Police were contacted by the organisation that the fraudster had targeted following their discovery that 29 fake invoices had been received and processed through their accounts department. All of the fake invoices had been received as attachments within e-mails that were purportedly sent from the PA of the CEO, and were found in the shared email inbox within the organisation’s accounts department.

The invoices were identified as fake as none of the companies requesting funds were legitimate. In addition, each of the invoices had what appeared to be the CEO’s signature authorising payment. All of the fake invoices were processed by a member of staff and evidence was found that linked the fraudster to the scam. The member of staff had previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit fraud and had already been sentenced to two and a half years imprisonment in August 2021.

Insider Invoice Fraud

The member of staff, the insider, was instrumental in this fraud being carried out. Insider invoice fraud refers to cases of fraud in which an insider’s access to the organisation’s systems and processes are essential in committing the fraud. Examples of insider invoice frauds, which are likely to increase during this period of increased financial pressures and the rising cost of living include:

  • False payment requests typically during busy periods
  • Overbilling a debtor and pocketing the difference
  • Recording false credits or refunds
  • Creating fictitious suppliers or shell companies for fraudulent payments
  • Forging signatures on payment authorisations
  • Submitting false invoices from fictitious or actual suppliers for payments

For advice on invoice fraud prevention and detection, including a review of processes and payment systems, please Contact Us