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Avoid Buyer and Seller Fraud when closing on your home

Posted by Karen on April 27, 2016
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Avoid Buyer and Seller Fraud when closing on your home

Hackers have found ways to hack into your email without you even knowing about it.  First, please take a moment to watch the video below.  Then please read on about steps we take to avoid being a victim of wire fraud.  We have other ways of giving you the wiring instructions so you can avoid either buyer fraud and seller fraud. Please be aware that email is now commonly hacked and it’s often Yahoo and Gmail email accounts.

If you ever get an email  that looks like it is from My Florida Lifestyle Group or the designated title company stating the wiring instructions have changed, at any time, but especially at last minute, please do the following:

1.)  Notify us immediately!  We will also notify the title company too.  The wiring instructions to wire your funds for closing will not change.  Do NOT use the updated wiring information that is sent to you by email!!!!  You will never have last minute wiring instructions changes.  Ever!!!!

2.)  We can send wiring instructions through our secure transaction system.  We will tell you over the phone which system we use and your email will come from this system.  We may even set up signatures for you to sign for the document and then it will be automatically emailed to you through our secure servers.  If it’s from the system we use and you have signed for it digitally, it’s safe to use.  We’ll ask title to fax or email into our secure system the wiring instructions for even more security, while we talk with them on the phone.

We can also fax the wiring instructions to you if you have a fax system and we will confirm which number we send wiring instructions from.  Please triple check the phone number we give you to confirm you are receiving the correct wiring instructions from our dedicated Fax Number.

3.)  If you are local, we can hand deliver the wiring instructions to you.  We get the wiring instructions straight from the title company.  To feel even more secure, be sure to confirm the routing numbers with the title company over the phone as well with your designated closing agent.

3.)  Be sure to communicate with us during the process and let us know you are transferring money.  We’ll notify the title company immediately that funds are in route.  Please be sure to bring your proof of wire transfer to closing, also.

4.)  Seller fraud has recently happened with a sellers home proceeds.  Luckily it was caught in time.  The seller had no idea someone had hacked their account and sent the title company info to wire to a fraudulent account.  This almost went through!  It is a good idea to securely give the title company your wiring information to receive your sellers proceeds.  Sellers could bring their wiring instructions directly from the bank to the title company.  You could fax it to us and we’ll walk it to the title company also, or you can fax it directly to the title company as well.  We will triple check account numbers before wiring any funds to anyone, including verifying account numbers over the telephone.

5.)  You could avoid this all together and have the title company cut a check for you to deposit directly into your bank.

Most of all, do not trust email and keep your guard up when it comes to wiring funds for closings.  Gmail and yahoo accounts are especially vulnerable.  They can be hacked without you knowing about it and you can be wiped out of your savings or your proceeds if you aren’t vigilant.