Police: $710K of Nassau taxpayer money was stolen in phishing scam

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More than $700,000 in Nassau taxpayer money has been recovered after it was taken in a phishing scam.

The county comptroller's officer turned over $710,000 of taxpayer money to thieves in the scheme that began in October.

"Government can become a victim too," says Nassau Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder. "And in this case, we were a victim."

Police say the hackers sent an email to the county comptroller's office and impersonated an actual vendor that does business in the county.

Ryder says the hackers claimed that they moved their bank account and that the county should forward the checks there.

Police say there were three other government agencies also involved in the scam. Some of that money has yet to be recovered.

"They targeted several different entities throughout the United States," Ryder says. "Some locally and some throughout and by doing that, it's like you're throwing out the fishing line and, and let's see what hooks on."

Nassau County Comptroller Jack Schnirman says their internal control systems caught the fraud and the money was returned to the county.

Schnirman says phishing emails usually start with "dear customer," have a sense of urgency or possible spelling mistakes. He also advises people to hover over any links to reveal the actual link where the information is going.

No arrests have been made.

 

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