Arup employee falls victim to US$25 million deepfake video call scam

Engineering firm Arup has confirmed that one of its employees in Hong Kong fell victim to a deepfake video call that led them to transfer HK$200 million (US$25.6 million) of the company’s money to criminals.

hacker or cyber crime hand reaching, stealing information on laptop, attack signifying internet theft while using online banking, anonymous business in technology internet and networking Image: smolaw11 via AdobeStock -

It follows news from Hong Kong police in February that a worker at a then-unnamed company had been tricked by people posing as “senior officers of the company” in a video call.

They were persuaded during what appeared to the employee to be a genuine company video conference to make a series of transactions to designated bank accounts.

In a statement issued to Construction Briefing, Arup said, “Back in January, we notified the police about an incident of fraud in Hong Kong. Unfortunately, we can’t go into details at this stage as the incident is still the subject of an ongoing investigation. 

“Our financial stability and business operations were not affected and none of our internal systems were compromised.”

Arup’s global chief information office Rob Greig added, “Like many other businesses around the globe, our operations are subject to regular attacks, including invoice fraud, phishing scams, WhatsApp voice spoofing and deepfakes. What we have seen is that the number and sophistication of these attacks has been rising sharply in recent months.

“This is an industry, business, and social issue, and I hope our experience can help raise awareness of the increasing sophistication and evolving techniques of bad actors.”


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Andy Brown Editor, Editorial, UK - Wadhurst Tel: +44 (0) 1892 786224 E-mail: [email protected]
Neil Gerrard Senior Editor, Editorial, UK - Wadhurst Tel: +44 (0) 7355 092 771 E-mail: [email protected]
Catrin Jones Deputy Editor, Editorial, UK – Wadhurst Tel: +44 (0) 791 2298 133 E-mail: [email protected]
Eleanor Shefford Brand Manager Tel: +44 (0) 1892 786 236 E-mail: [email protected]