Beware – Cyber Fraud

Aug 19, 2019

There is a very sophisticated cyber fraud being committed against unsuspecting parties in real estate transactions.

The Fraudster hacks into the email of the real estate agents, buyers, sellers, attorneys, or bank to obtain all of the information about the sale of the house.  The Fraudster then sends a legitimate looking email containing all of the correct information and requests that a large sum of money be transferred into a designated account, claiming it is necessary for the real estate transaction to proceed. 

The email looks so legitimate that people are complying and losing large sums of money.

Please communicate and educate your clients that such a scam exists.   Tell your clients that before transferring any funds to immediately call their attorney and/or the person claiming to request the wire transfer to confirm whether the request is legitimate.  Another good practice is to use encrypted emails, strong passwords, and change the passwords to your emails regularly.

There is a Wire Fraud Advisory form on Documents on Demand under the Legal Section that you should give to your Buyers and Sellers warning them of this scam and providing some Best Practices.

If you or anyone you know has been affected by this cyber scam, you can report it to the FBI by visiting www.ic3.gov/default.aspx or call the Long Island FBI field office at 631-501-8600.