Atlanta Mortgage News

Wire Fraud Is Going Strong

October 8th, 2018 5:42 PM by Elizabeth Washburn

Avoid the Scam
Wire Transfer Fraud: A New Twist

 
The security of my clients is a top priority.  There continues to be wire transfer fraud focused on mortgage transactions.  Now there is a new twist.

The Scam
 
Hackers often attempt to divert closing proceedings from title companies, attorneys, banks, and Realtors’ email with wiring instruction changes. The thieves, who compromise buyer and seller email accounts to intervene when a wire transfer is about to happen, are stealing thousands of dollars through these wire transfer scams.
 
There is a new twist in this – thieves will call the victim first as a cold call notifying them that there has been a change and to look out for the email with the new instructions.
 
Tips for Buyers and Sellers
 
Verify Wiring Instructions Changes
 
Customers receiving requests for changes to the wiring instructions should verify the change with all of the involved parties using telephone numbers previously provided. Under no circumstance should wiring instructions be changed based on a phone call alone.
  
Do Not to Accept Wiring Instruction Changes through email
 
Hackers target emails with wiring instructions. They use the information to send a modified email with updated directions for wiring money into their personal account. Never accept directions to modify a wire transfer from any email.
 
Watch for Name & Location Discrepancies
 
Be extremely wary of wires going to any account that is not in the name of the escrow company or attorney. Also, be suspicious of any account with a geographic location different than the seller—and never wire outside of the United States. There are possible explanations for different names and odd locations, but ALL red flags should be explored in detail with a phone call to the attorney's office with the number given to you verbally by me, your mortgage officer.  It took some time to earn that money.  Let's make sure it get to your new home.

 

Posted by Elizabeth Washburn on October 8th, 2018 5:42 PM