Spotlight on: Charity fraud

Unfortunately charities are no less likely to be targeted than organisations in the private or public sector. Fraudsters do not give a free pass to charitable activities no matter how much good you’re trying to do in the world. This week The Charity Commission issued an alert for charities following a recent spate of attempted impersonation frauds:

We have received several reports from charities who have been targeted by fraudsters impersonating members of staff, specifically attempting to change employees bank details. In all these cases the request was made through an email.”

These frauds usually contain an element of social engineering – the psychological manipulation of people so that they perform actions or divulge confidential information. You can find out more about social engineering fraud on the Barclays Digital Wings website.

Reporting fraud

If your charity has fallen victim to this type of fraud, or any other type of fraud, you should report it to Action Fraud. Charities affected by fraud should also report it to The Charity Commission as a serious incident.

Resources and guidance

The Charity Commission has identified 8 guiding principles for tackling charity fraud, which accompanies their comprehensive guide to protecting your charity from fraud and cyber crime.

The Charity Fraud Awareness Hub – a joint initiative by the Fraud Advisory Panel, Charity Commission and UK Finance – has a wealth of free resources and brings together charity professionals from across the globe to discuss and share ideas on how to protect the sector.

The National Cyber Security Centre has also designed a Small Charity Guide and a handy infographic which shows you how to improve cyber security within your charity – quickly, easily and at low cost.