An injunction is a legal remedy that compels a party to perform or refrain from performing certain acts. An article reflective of the information pertaining to injunctions may be found here; https://singaporelegaladvice.com/law-articles/types-of-injunctions-in-singapore/
In December 2020, Silvester Legal LLC represented a Middle Eastern company for the application of an injunction to freeze a Singapore based bank account.
The agreement had been established by the client and a Singaporean company. The scope of service and remuneration that was to be paid by the client and the local company was also agreed upon. The client then arranged for a considerable payment to be made to the local company via bank transfer. It was later discovered that the email account of the local company had been hacked by an unidentifiable hacker who impersonated the authorised representative of the local company by using an email address with a similar domain and subsequently provided instructions for the incoming funds to instead be transferred to an alternative bank account. The client obliged and the funds were successfully paid to the bank account belonging to the hacker in Singapore.
A case of this nature would typically require the company or organisation to lodge a police report and escalate the matter to the Commercial Affairs Department (CAD), which was done in this case.
Silvester Legal LLC drafted and sent out a letter to the legal department of the said bank and sought assistance in freezing the account that belonged to the unidentifiable hacker.
Since banks only provide general helpline information to forward queries and other forms of correspondence to, it is advised to make a personal visit to the bank to ensure that the matter is dealt with immediately.
Silvester Legal successfully applied for the injunction supported by the affidavit of the client’s director on an urgent basis. This order was granted by a senior judge of the High court and duly served on the bank and the hacker’s address.
If you encounter an issue of a similar nature, Silvester Legal would remind you that time is of the essence and if you suspect that you may be a victim of online fraud or phishing scams, the following steps should be taken without any delay:
- Lodge a police report and escalate the matter to the CAD. A report in-person supported by the relevant documentation would be the best way to do this. Obtain the name and contact number of the CAD officer in charge of your case and follow up with them expeditiously.
- Report the matter to the bank the monies were transferred to. Again, a report in-person supported by the relevant documentation would be the best way to do this. Obtain the name and contact number of the bank officer in-charge of your case and follow up with them expeditiously.
- Instruct your solicitors to commence a claim seeking the recovery of the monies.
- File an injunction to ‘freeze’ the movement of finds in the bank account.
With the prevalence of cross-border commercial transactions, online fraud and phishing scams are on the rise. The progressive sophistication of crimes that hackers commit would make anyone vulnerable to becoming a victim. Silvester Legal would suggest you to be extra cautious when dealing with instructions regarding bank transfer provided via email and verify its contents by ensuring that the party providing the transfer details is aware of what has been sent. It is also essential that you confirm the legitimacy of the sender’s email address.
If you require assistance regarding an identical issue or have any questions regarding the remedy of injunction, please contact us.
Please note that this article does not constitute express or implied legal advice, whether in whole or in part. If you require legal advice, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.