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Cyber fraud - your questions answered

30 January 2020

The news about our cyber-fraud has led to a number of questions, so we thought it would be helpful to share these FAQs with you. If you have further questions please email us via communications@redkitehousing.org.uk and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

How much was stolen / diverted?

The exact amount was £932,691.48, but this does not impact on our ability to deliver the same level of service as before and we still remain financially strong.

Will rents go up as a result of the fraud

The fraud will have no impact on our rents. Rents were always due to be reviewed from 1st April and we will shortly be writing to all tenants – as we do every year - to let them know what their rent is for 2020/2021.

Who was to blame?

We were the victims of a sophisticated fraudulent attack; our systems were not compromised but we believe those of one of our external business sources were. We failed to follow a key process. Had the check, set out in the process been followed, we would have detected the fraud. It is this single point of failure that we have addressed in our internal review of learning and changes required that feature in an action.

Have you been hacked?

No, we are confident that our IT Systems were not hacked into, which means no customer or sensitive data has been placed at risk. We carried out an internal review which was validated by an review by external cyber specialists.

Did you report it straight away?

Yes, we reported it to the police, our insurers and the Regulator of Social Housing

Why are you only speaking about this now?

We have now been given approval from the police that we can speak publicly about the fraud and the regulator had embargoed their decision to downgrade our governance score until 29th January 2020

Did you investigate it yourselves?

We commenced an internal enquiry/ review without delay, supported by a leading external cyber security and financial investigation specialist

Has there been any disciplinary action as a result?

We are unable to disclose if any action was taken against individual members of staff.

How did it happen?

There was a breach of an external source’s computer system which enabled criminals to launch a fraudulent attack on us. Typically, criminals intercept emails and request a change of bank details, replicating invoices with altered bank details. Our failure to then follow an internal process allowed payment to be made to the fraudsters account.  This process was industry standard but we have made improvements to this to minimise the chances of this happening again.

Does it affect the business in any way?

The money lost doesn’t have any impact of our day to day business. We are financially strong and still able to pay our suppliers, staff and contractors. We have recently refinanced our loans which has saved approximately £1.1m meaning this strengthens our financial position.

Are the Police investigating

Yes, the police are actively investigating.

Do you know who committed the fraud?

No, but the Police investigation is still ongoing


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Red Kite Community Housing, Windsor Court, Kingsmead Business Park, High Wycombe, HP11 1JU

Red Kite Community Housing is the trading name of Red Kite Community Housing Limited, a charitable registered society which operates for the benefit of the community under the Cooperative and Community Benefit Societies Act 2014, registered in England with the Financial Conduct Authority (registration number 31322R) and the Regulator of Social Housing (registration number 4682). VAT number 290 7410 06.