After the businesswoman and TV personality said her office fell victim to a phishing attempt to the tune of nearly $400,000, Corcoran confirmed to USA TODAY Thursday that she got her money back.
"I’m thrilled! I had already accepted it and moved on. Everyone told me I wouldn’t get the money back and it just seems unbelievable," Corcoran told USA TODAY in a statement. "The money was wired through a German bank on the way to the scammer’s Chinese account. But my bank put pressure on the German bank and they froze the money giving us time to prove it was fraud. I really thought it was a goner!"
Corcoran told People magazine Wednesday her bookkeeper was duped into wiring the money after corresponding with hackers, who posed as Corcoran's assistant.
"I lost the $388,700 as a result of a fake email chain sent to my company," Corcoran told the outlet. "It was an invoice supposedly sent by my assistant to my bookkeeper approving the payment for a real estate renovation. There was no reason to be suspicious as I invest in a lot of real estate."
Corcoran, 70, said the money was wired on Tuesday and "my bookkeeper copied my assistant, who was shocked to see her name on the correspondence."
No one realized anything was awry until Corcoran's assistant saw the correspondence.
"The detail that no one caught was that my assistant’s email address was misspelled by one letter, making it the fake email address set up by the scammers," Corcoran said.
Email still beats texts – for hackers phishing for your data
Phishing attempts via email continue to be one of the most common places for scammers to target their victims.
Business email getting compromised "is one of the oldest tricks in the book, and super effective," Sam Small, the chief security officer for ZeroFOX, a firm that helps enterprises with security protection, told USA TODAY.
Erich Kron, a "security awareness advocate," for KnowBe4, a Clearwater, Florida-based firm that trains employees about how to detect phishing attacks before it's too late, told USA TODAY email is "far and away the big one," due to volume.
"The scammer disappeared and I’m told that it’s a common practice, and I won’t be getting the money back," Corcoran said, though she's maintaining a positive attitude. "I was upset at first, but then remembered it was only money."
USA TODAY has reached out to Corcoran's rep for comment.
Contributing: Jefferson Graham
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 'Shark Tank' star Barbara Corcoran gets money back after phishing scam