Construction company thwarts digital fraud

Look at your inbox. Imagine how many run-of-the-mill emails you’ve received from trusted coworkers and contacts. Now imagine that one of them – totally indistinguishable from all the others you’ve received – was actually from a fraudster.

That was the situation facing a chartered accountant at a large construction company. Luckily, the company already had a solution in place.

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One of Australia’s largest and most prolific developers, the company has built properties all across the country. The size of the organisation and the breadth of its work mean that its teams regularly work with a large variety of suppliers and vendors.

Our company takes security and anti-fraud measures seriously. This includes finding preventive measures against cyber-fraud.


The company has a strong set of financial controls and anti-fraud measures. But, like many organisations, some of these controls were established in an era where fraud was largely analogue and cyber-crime was more science fiction than everyday reality.

This can leave gaps for cyber-criminals to exploit, increasing the business’s risk of falling victim to fraud and scams. With cyber-crime on the rise in Australia, it’s not surprising that the company was eventually targeted. The chartered accountant received a supplier email requesting a change in their banking details – it was a normal-looking message from a supplier who was already familiar to the accountant.

Unfortunately, the employee’s email had been infiltrated and weaponised in a business email compromise (BEC) attack. It’s the sort of tactic that older financial controls would not have been able to prevent.


Long before the request to change the supplier’s banking details was received, the construction company was already aware of these sorts of cyber risks and had decided to fortify their supply chains by implementing Eftsure’s payment protection solution.

The decision proved critical during the incident. The team triggered the Eftsure-powered change request process, and the fraudster completed the request form by email – but left a note stating they didn’t have their phone with them and wouldn’t be able to verify their identity through the usual SMS code.

After Eftsure’s verification specialists performed the usual check, Eftsure was able to identify that the request was fraudulent and that the contact’s email was compromised.


Together, the accountant and Eftsure saved the construction company tens of thousands in fraudulent payments, protecting both the business’s financial assets and its relationship with a critical supplier.

The accountant mentioned that the most crucial outcome of implementing Eftsure has been plugging the gaps of previous financial controls and mitigating their risk of falling victim to similar fraud attempts.

Since implementing Eftsure, the construction company has:

  • Strengthened their financial controls. While they already had controls in place, Eftsure’s payment protection solution helps guard against newer, digital fraud attempts.
  • Digitised manual workflows. Previously, many of the supplier verification steps were manual, necessitating internal legwork. Now, these steps are either outsourced to Eftsure’s verification specialists or automatically flagged in real-time by Eftsure’s solution, which cross-matches supplier details against its proprietary database of millions of verified suppliers.
  • Created a streamlined verification process. Rather than relying on overly manual steps for responding to suppliers’ banking detail change requests, team members can now initiate a formalised, secure process for suppliers.

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