Real estate agents are targets of phishing schemes designed by cybercriminals to commit wire fraud. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) released a video in 2016 to raise awareness among real estate agents and homebuyers about this serious issue.
According to The Traverse City Business News, cybercriminals typically hack into a real estate agent’s email account to monitor real estate transaction activity. “When they see that a closing is scheduled, they send the customer an email that appears to be from the agent, giving closing instructions or changing previous instructions.” It is not unusual for these criminals to “spoof” wiring instructions to make the transfer instructions look as though they came from a title company, bank, or a real estate company. Unfortunately, homebuyers who fall prey to these scams stand to lose hundreds of thousands of dollars in a matter of minutes.
AmeriTitle takes safeguarding the personal information of our clients, homebuyers and sellers very seriously. Our escrow officers and escrow assistants include disclaimers in all of their email correspondence that states we require email recipients to call their AmeriTitle escrow officer to verify wire transfer instructions verbally prior to wiring funds. In addition to this measure, we have policies and procedures in place to ensure that the bank account and other financial information we are entrusted with receives the highest level of protection. To learn more, visit https://www.amerititle.com/QualityAssurance.