Beware of False IOLTA Notices Claiming Insufficient Funds

10/08/2013 -

On Monday, October 7, email filtering systems at the District of Columbia (DC) Bar Association detected and blocked numerous email messages addressed to employees bearing forged service@citibank.com return addresses.  Messages allege the recipient’s Interest on Lawyers Trust Account (IOLTA) has insufficient funds to pay an outstanding check and includes a .zip file attachment purportedly containing additional information and presumed to contain malware.  There is a strong possibility that these messages are part of a broader phishing attack targeted to legal professionals. Email headers indicate that these messages were sent from several different email servers scattered across the globe.

The full text of one of these false IOLTA message follows:

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Please see the attached Iolta report for 7448-1996.

We received a check request in the amount of $19,521.42 for the above referenced file. However, the attached report reflects a $0 balance. At your earliest convenience, please advise how this request is to be funded.

Thanks.

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Should any Rhode Island Bar Association members receive such an email we recommend you delete it and do not open any attachments to the email.