Iowans need to watch for ‘spearphishing’ scams at work

Iowans are being warned about a new type of scam called “spearphishing.”

Jim Temmer, with the Better Business Bureau, says it’s different from a regular email or phone scam because it targets individuals at their place of work.

“You will get a text, you don’t recognize the number, and they’re going to claim they’re your boss,” Mr. Temmer says. “For instance, here at the BBB, it’d say ‘Hi, this is Jim, I’m tied up right now, please text me back, I’ve got something for you to do.’”

Mr. Temmer says a spearphishing scam may come in the form of a strange email or text from your boss or your boss’ boss.

“I’m the scammer and I say, ‘Hey, you know what? Somebody just did something great. Go buy a $500 gift card for them, or send a check to this person,’” Mr. Temmer says. “Whatever it is I’m going to ask, it’s a scam.”

They might also ask for personal or business information from you, or ask that you fill out and approve an invoice.

If you find yourself getting a strange message like this, contact your IT department or your boss directly and make sure it’s legitimate.