We just got this pretty alarming message from the Hawaii State Procurement Office:

The Judiciary has notified the State Procurement Office (SPO) regarding an unknown third party (Perpetrator) impersonating a government employee. The perpetrator is contacting vendors by phone or by email and is issuing fraudulent purchase orders, which appears as if signed by a government employee. On acceptance of the purchase order, the goods are sent to an unknown third party, typically a forward shipping company.

Fortunately the vendor in this instance, determined the purchase order was fraudulent and cancelled the order. The Judiciary has reported this incident to HPD.

If you have any suspicion of receiving a fraudulent purchase order or invoice, please notify Stanton Mato at the State Procurement Office at (808)586-0566 or stanton.d.mato@hawaii.gov.

So, criminals are using social engineering to scam local businesses. One of the BEST ways to protect yourself from being a victim is education.

My question to you is: would you like a quick cheat-sheet to fighting cyber criminals in your day-to-day life?