Hacking & Wire Fraud
Email hacking and wire fraud are on the rise. Parties to real estate transactions are a very common target because large amounts of money are involved.
Cybercriminals can gain access to email accounts and/or create false accounts to send emails that appear to come from your agent, closer or loan officer.
We encourage all of our customers to take the following steps to better protect themselves:
- Before sending any money via wire, confirm the wire instructions by calling your title company. Always call the number on the company’s website rather than one provided in an email.
- If you are requesting that your proceeds be wired after closing, confirm your wire instructions with the closer prior to closing by contacting the closer directly. Again do not call a phone number provided in an email.
- Requests for changes to wire instruction for seller proceeds will likely not be honored by a title company unless executed by all sellers in the presence of the closer.
- If you receive any email relating to your real estate transaction that seems in any way suspicious, DO NOT OPEN ANY ATTACHMENTS but instead follow-up with the sender via telephone to ensure the legitimacy of the email. Opening an attachment from a fraudulent sender will give the hacker access to your computer.
Protecting our customers is our number one priority and these small steps can help combat this growing problem and ensure that all involved are protected.