The transportation industry is vulnerable to scams from astute criminals who have a basic understanding of industry terminology and business exposures. Logistics companies are exposed even more during the busy holiday shipping season as the need for delivering goods is critical.
Most recently logistics companies have been sent letters from what appears to be the U.S. Department of Transportation Procurement Office. These letters, typed on official looking letterhead request financial information under the guise that the company will not be allowed to do business with the DOT if financial details are not released. These letters appear to be genuine and can easily confuse an employee who receives this letter via fax or email.
Don't be fooled by this scam. You can protect your business from this criminal activity. Here are a few tips on what you can do to avoid being scammed and maintain your business' financial integrity.
Employee Awareness -
Have ongoing formal meetings to discuss scams that come from "consultants" or fake companies. Discuss how the request is communicated and then post that information in an open area where employees can easily refer back.
Know the Law -
Be aware of regulation changes and government requirements for your business. If you have a concern or are unsure of a specific communication, contact the U.S. Department of Transportation directly.
Keep Alert -
Unscrupulous individuals are constantly looking for ways to cheat and steal. Be suspicious of unsolicited requests for financial records and documents.
Share with Industry Colleagues -
Exposing scams limits criminal success. Tell others about what you've heard or have been privy to. By doing this everyone can be protected.
Steven Bojan, is the Vice President - Fleet Risk Services, for the Risk Services Division HUB International. To reach Steven or a local HUB risk services expert click here.