(21 November 2018) — K2 Intelligence is continuing to play a key role in investigative efforts for clients embroiled in a sophisticated impersonation scam targeting powerful, high-profile female executives.
This scam—and K2 Intelligence’s involvement in the investigation—was highlighted by the Hollywood Reporter in “Hunting the Con Queen of Hollywood: Who’s the ‘Crazy Evil Genius’ Behind a Global Racket?” (11 July 2018) and “FBI Opens Investigation into Hollywood’s Notorious ‘Con Queen’” (27 August 2018) and by The Times of London in “Who Is the Hollywood Con Queen?” (5 September 2018). The Daily Mail also reported on the continuing investigation in “The Woman Who Conned Hollywood” (17 November 2018).
The articles recognize K2 Intelligence’s high-end corporate investigations work unraveling this sophisticated impersonation scam, a con that has successfully defrauded a number of Hollywood industry insiders, ranging from make-up artists to stunt men, of many thousands of dollars each. According to Nicoletta Kotsianas, a director in the firm’s New York office who has worked extensively on this investigation, “The people being impersonated are a who’s who of Hollywood, as well as high-net-worth individuals in New York.”
High-profile individuals are popular targets when it comes to similar crimes, especially in this age of extensive social media usage. Snežana Gebauer, head of K2 Intelligence’s Investigations and Disputes practice, explains, “There is an important element of social engineering going on with these victims. They know everything about their victims' personal lives and use the necessary pressure points, and they use publicly available information about the executives they are impersonating.”
Backed by the global reach of a network built over decades, K2 Intelligence’s team—including former prosecutors, law enforcement agents, cyber experts, research analysts, and forensic accountants—has the proven ability to help clients investigate, identify, and disrupt such fraudulent schemes.