Protect Your Farmers from Fraud

With a rise in cyber-crime during the COVID-19 lockdowns, it has become increasingly difficult to tell fraudulent emails, competitions, and schemes apart from legitimate business enquiries. Many industries are experiencing challenges with this; however, farmers have been affected more than most.

Despite best endeavours not to fall for scams, there is still the odd occasion where we may get caught out. To avoid this, we need to be on high alert whenever we receive an email or letter that we are not expecting. As a farm insurance broker, it is your responsibility to ensure your clients are aware of the dangers posed by cyber criminals. Read on to discover the types of fraud farmers are most exposed to and the tell-tale signs of when a scammer might be at work.

Invoice Fraud

When it comes to farm fraud deception, invoice fraud is particularly convincing. Indeed, Land Based Underwriters were recently notified about a farm secretary who received a fraudulent invoice for feedstuffs. Sadly, this cost the unlucky farmer over £8,000. When your clients know what features to look out for, attempted invoice fraud becomes more recognisable. The criminal will usually send correspondence imitating a farm’s regular supplier, telling them their bank account details have changed. The farmer innocently updates their regular payments so that money is transferred to the criminal’s bank account instead.

‘I Paid You by Mistake’ Fraud

When someone phones a farmer telling them they have accidentally transferred them money, this is known as ‘I paid you by mistake’ fraud. The payment appears in the farmer’s account; however, it is possible to withdraw the money within a certain time frame. By the time the farmer has refunded the cyber-criminal, they have already withdrawn their money out of the farmer’s account.

Car Park Ticket Fraud

Farm insurance brokers should also make their clients aware of car park ticket deception. This is where farmers receive an email that looks like a car park fine. If they are not wise to it, the farmer may enter their bank details thinking they are paying off the fine, when really, they have just given their financial credentials to a cyber-criminal. Another method similar to this is one is where farmers are sent an email congratulating them for winning an online competition. They are told all that is needed to claim the prize is for them to pass over their bank details.

Farm Insurance Cover from Land Based Underwriters

Land Based Underwriters offer insurance policies for farm insurance brokers looking to protect the smallholdings and agricultural vehicles of their clients. We also provide environmental impairment liability insurance which covers pollution, damage to protected species, business interruption and more. Get in touch with us today for more information about our leading insurance policies for farm insurance brokers.