Oct. 7, 2016 – The State Bar of Wisconsin has been notified that several members were recently the target of attempted theft by an automated clearing house (ACH) withdrawal. ACH is an electronic network used to process credit and debit transactions.
The funds transfers were identified on State Bar members’ banking documents as having been originated by the State Bar of Wisconsin, which was not the case. These appear to be fraudulent transactions via a “spoofing” scam. The State Bar of Wisconsin does not and cannot access your bank accounts (personal, business or trust) via ACH.
The State Bar of Wisconsin recommends that members monitor all bank accounts frequently, possibly daily, for possible fraudulent transactions.
Should you discover any fraudulent transactions of this nature or have any questions about this scam, please contact the State Bar of Wisconsin at (800) 728-7788.
Members should work directly with their financial institutions to address suspicious transactions which may include the closure of the affected account. Members should also consult with financial institutions regarding fraud protection measures.
The State Bar has been notified that similar possible fraudulent transactions have been reported by Iowa licensed attorneys in relation to their lawyer trust accounts. Contact the Iowa Office of Professional Regulation for more information.
Finally, the State Bar of Wisconsin reminds attorneys to be prudent in monitoring bank accounts, surfing the internet, managing emails, and in handling any confidential personal identity and/or business information in light of cybercrime activities.
Note that “cybersecurity” is the special focus of the October issue of Wisconsin Lawyer, which will be released next week. This issue promises to give practical advice on protecting data from cyber risks.