Bol.com’s mistake is illustrated by a ruling by a Utrecht court last week. Since Bol.com sells Brabantia products through its platform, the online store regularly makes payments to the houseware manufacturer.
In November 2019, Paul received an email from Brabantia in a poor Dutch language. “Please note that starting today we have a change in our bank account information for incoming payments,” the cover letter states. “From now on, all incoming payments must be transferred to our branch account in Spain. We would appreciate if you could update your information.” Fraudsters were able to forge letters and emails from Brabantia because they hacked into the email address of an employee in the fall of 2019. For example, a total of € 751,493.09 ends up with the fraudsters and not with Brabantia. According to the court, Brabantia is still owed by the lost money.
The manufacturer of garbage containers and kitchen utensils still wanted to see the money, so she went to court. Bol.com believes its employees have sufficient reason to believe that the change to the Brabantia account number was correct. The email address, letter layout, and department signatures look authentic, according to the online store.
The court ruled otherwise. The request to change the account number should have resulted in a “proper” suspicion of Bol.com. Moreover, the bell should ring if the Brabant producer of waste bins and kitchen utensils suddenly changes its account number to a Spanish account. Misspellings should raise some doubts.
Bol.com is still considering the appeal, but will continue to sell Brabantia products. Brabantia says she wants to maintain a good working relationship with bol.com, but is happy to judge.