International Transport Intermediaries Club (ITIC) said on Monday March 2nd that it had been receiving an increasing number of reports of fraudulent invoices being submitted to vessel owners and managers for medical testing services following the outbreak of Covid-19.
ITIC noted that providing medical tests to seafarers was one measure being widely adopted by owners and managers in an attempt to contain the spread of the virus.
ITIC said that any fraudulent invoices would often contain errors which could easily be detected by those responsible for settling disbursement accounts. For example, a recent case involved an invoice where the vessel was listed with an incorrect flag. By simply checking with the vessel’s master it was quickly confirmed that the invoice was fraudulent.
ITIC strongly urged members and others responsible for settling disbursement accounts – and in particular ship managers – to be vigilant and to check all invoices in relation to coronavirus testing.