Juneau Soccer Club defrauded in online scam

first_imgJuneau Soccer Club hosts a number of community soccer events including the coed camp, pictured here on June 26, 2015, which promotes the global sport. (File photo by Elizabeth Jenkins/KTOO)An online fraud scheme has bilked the Juneau Soccer Club out of more than $13,700.Listen nowIt began in February when a series of innocuous looking emails appeared.“It’s a form of email scam called ‘spoofing’ where they make it appear that the email is coming from someone in your organization,” Ellie Davis, a board member of the club, said on Monday. The nonprofit has nearly 400 players — some as young as 4 — signed up and organizes teams and tournaments. “The emails appeared to be from our board president to our board treasurer and the emails requested that payments be made on an invoice for some soccer equipment.”The so-called invoices requested three separate payments: $2,800, $5,500 and $5,384.The board treasurer paid what appeared to be legitimate expenses.But when the club president denied ever making the requests, it was clear something was wrong.That’s when the club took a closer look.“Hindsight is 20/20,” Davis said. “When you looked back at some of the detailed information in the emails that you couldn’t get unless you were looking at it in an expanded view, the time zones suggested that they were not in Alaska or maybe not in the United States.”Fortunately the club has enough savings to take the hit and doesn’t plan to cancel any programs.Juneau Police Lt. David Campbell said the department is investigating the source of the emails.“In the time I’ve been on the Juneau Police Department, I’ve seen lots of fraud cases come through,” Campbell said Monday. “I haven’t seen necessarily a spoofing one come through like this one has. But I think one of the best defenses that an organization can have is just really strong internal accounting principles.”The Juneau Soccer Club has a 2014 policy requiring two signatures for payments in excess of $5,000.Campbell said that’s a good policy. Though it wasn’t followed in this case.“Having procedures in place that require funds to be distributed by more than just one person’s authorization would go a long way,” Campbell said. “Having multiple eyes look at something before a transfer happens is always a good idea.”The soccer club’s treasurer has since resigned.last_img

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