According to the FBI, 27,178 people in Texas reported being victims of cybercrime in 2019. And those victims lost a total of more than $221 million.
Wire fraud is the most common form of real estate cybercrime. With more business than ever being done online, help your clients stay safe by warning them about wire fraud and recommending these tips:
- Be suspicious of any message with money-wiring instructions. Red flags include changes or updates to wire details you previously received. However, a first message with wiring instructions or a message to “resend” or “verify” instructions could be fraudulent as well.
- Before you send any funds, call your settlement or closing agent at a phone number you know is correct. Do not call any number from the message you received.
- After you wire funds with instructions you have independently verified, call your settlement agent to confirm the funds were received.
- If you suspect fraud, contact your bank and the FBI immediately. The sooner you take action, the better the chances of recovering funds.