Phony BBB Phishing Email Targets Accountants

February 22, 2012

The BBB has issued numerous warnings about a malicious e-mail that continues to circulate in BBB's name, but the scammers have added a new twist to this scheme by targeting accountants.

Specifically, accountants – and even some businesses that aren’t in that industry - are receiving emails from a address that contains the American Institute of CPA's name and logo. The message informs recipients that their CPA license is being terminated due to tax fraud allegations and encourages them to click on a link and reply to the charges. The link leads to a third party website that downloads a virus on to the recipient's computer.

The BBB also continues to receive calls from local businesses that have received a suspicious e-mail coming from a variety of addresses, such as,, or with the subject line "BBB Service Re: Complaint #" followed by an eight to nine-digit number. Both BBB Accredited and non-Accredited businesses have been targeted.

Because these messages are malicious and fraudulent, BBB advises any business that receives these e-mails to take the following steps:

  • Do not click on any links and do not reply to the message,
  • Forward the message to,
  • Completely delete the message from your inbox, and
  • Run a full virus scan on your computer if you clicked on any links.

If you receive any e-mails from BBB about a complaint filed against your business and need assistance in determining whether or not it is legitimate, contact your BBB directly at 318-387-4600.

For more advice on how to protect your business from malicious online attacks and data breaches visit

A pdf copy of the phishing e-mail appears below: