Beware Of Fraudulent Cargo Websites

16 December 2012

The ICC International Maritime Bureau (IMB) is warning against fraudulent cargo tracking websites.

The IMB noted that these sites have been created and improved over the years to add legitimacy for fraudsters to entrap their would-be victims. This is particularly true for containerized shipments, where convincing tracking websites highlight the degree of sophistication employed.

The first example covers what appears to be a valuable containerized shipment of copper cathodes from South America to the Far East. The Bs/L presented appeared on their face to be in order. The carrier's website further attested that the cargoes had been loaded as per the two Bs/L referred.

IMB's investigations on the other hand contradicted what the website stated.

The physical carrier had quickly confirmed to the IMB that the vessel was trading elsewhere. While the vessel had bunkered at the discharge port, no cargo operations had been performed in respect of this transaction.

The IMB said that a number of mistakes on the fake carrier website were also present with regard to the vessel and further highlights the potential problem with reliance on such resources for cargo confirmation.