A spokesperson for the Diocese says they have asked the FBI to investigate after a person or group impersonating an employee requested a transfer of funds on December 13th. The Diocese transferred $45,880 to the person. A statement from Bishop Richard Pates says they believe someone who was not employed by the Diocese requested the funds and a mistake was made in transferring the funds as the result of a misinterpretation of their policy.
The Bishop’s statement says they do not believe there was any wrongdoing by an employee and they will release more information once they hear back from the FBI on their investigation. Most of the funds are expected to be covered by insurance.
It is the second major loss of funds by the Des Moines Diocese, which was also hit by cybercriminals back in 2010.