Fraudulent use of Wire

June 18, 2021

The Problem

Throughout the history of communication, fraud and scams have inherently been present. From phony telephone sales, pyramid schemes over ransomware, phishing emails to premium number fraud — criminals are as ingenious. The scale of the problem is not small — it’s a huge global issue. From the 32bn USD lost annually on telecom fraud or the 6tn USD problem that is cybersecurity; if there is a vulnerability it will be exploited.

Scams using Wire

Wire is secure and private. In fact, with our end-to-end encryption model, Wire is about as secure as it gets — and we will not leak your information. Just like any other communication platform though, sadly there are fraudsters out there who are using platforms like ours for their own gain. We want to make our users aware that it comes down to how you interact with people that determines your vulnerability to fraudulent attack. For example, a user may be lured into accepting a connection request and having a conversation with someone they think they can trust, but actually whose motives aren’t genuine. In this example, Wire is the vehicle — just like a BMW or Chevrolet can be used for a robbery.

Examples of scams

To keep up to date on the latest scams that could affect our users we monitor all kinds of outlets, including Twitter, cyber security forums and the World Economic Forum. The most frequent scam we are aware of that involves Wire is a job applications scam. Fraudsters impersonate large organizations and offer jobs or interviews over messaging platforms such as Wire. Most often the victim is someone who would become a remote working employee. They get offered the job and are then asked to buy a laptop and mobile through a portal that is setup by the fraudster under the promise that they will be reimbursed when joining the company. The reality is that there is no job, the interviewee never receives the laptop or mobile, and the fraudster has collected the money and closed their Wire account.

What to do as a business if this happens to you

If criminals or fraudsters masquerade as your business in order to set up and conduct fake interviews, Wire will immediately take action on your behalf. This is the process you should follow if this happens to you:

  • Reach out to Wire immediately and directly by visiting support.Wire.com and selecting the blue “Help” button
  • Be sure to select “Report Misuse” as the issue reason, we prioritise requests like this in our support queue
  • Provide as much detail as possible; Wire username of the suspicious user, statements from defrauded individuals, etc. Screenshots of the fraudulent activity are especially helpful. Our support team may request additional information, so provide as much detail as possible with your initial submission to ensure the fastest resolution.

What to do as an interviewee if this happens to you

If you’re attending a job interview / have secured a role, always ask the company to arrange your work tools — you should not have to purchase equipment on your own. Reputable companies will organise procurement of such items and ship them to your address. If you are in any doubt whatsoever, contact a senior employee of the company in question and ask if these are standard business practices. Look for a reputable figure with a long tenure with the company and frequent posts on a platform like LinkedIn.

Our commitment

Our commitment is to help your business stay safe. Upon any request we will take immediate action to best protect you as an individual or your business by reacting promptly and responsibly to shut down the fraudsters as quickly as possible.

About Wire

Wire is the most secure collaboration platform, transforming the way businesses communicate at the same speed and with the same impact that our founders disrupted telephony with Skype. Headquartered in Berlin with offices in Switzerland and San Francisco, Wire’s award-winning collaboration and communications platform counts over 1,800 government and enterprise customers worldwide, including EY, Fortum, the German government and four other G7 governments. Recognized for its secure collaboration platform as a leader and high performer by G2 Crowd, IDC, Forrester and Gartner, Wire offers messaging, audio/video conferencing, file-sharing, and external collaboration - all protected by the most advanced end-to-end encryption.


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