Fort Lauderdale Loses $1.2 Million in Elaborate Phishing Scam

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In an audacious phishing scam, the city of Fort Lauderdale in South Florida found itself defrauded of a staggering $1.2 million. The city had acquiesced to a large payment demand on September 14 under the belief that the invoice was a legitimate one from Moss Construction, thereby playing into the calculated hands of the scammers. This was as per a report from the local police department.

Moss Construction, Mayor Dean Trantalis affirmed to a CNN affiliate, is indeed amidst major construction works for the city. They are engaged in the building of a new police station, a project valued at a monumental $144 million, approximately 28 miles north of Miami.

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According to Mayor Trantalis, the scam was no simple demand for funds via email. It portrayed an eerie level of sophistication, with elaborate documentation and paperwork accompanying the request. The scheme was so convincing that, in his words, it was “consistent with the practice that we’ve been following.”

However, subsequent investigation earmarked this payment request as fraudulent. Moss Construction, deeply perturbed by the deception, issued a statement: “Malicious actors took advantage of our good name and reputation to attempt fraud.” The spokesperson emphasized how the fraudsters had used some common information, easily available in a public search, to facilitate their duplicitous phishing attempt.

The case remains under active investigation by the Fort Lauderdale police. In the wake of the incident, they issued a cautious reminder to their community to exercise prudence in payment processes and maintain vigilance against potential scams looming in the digital world.

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