The ability to communicate and conduct business electronically is a convenience and reality in nearly all parts of our lives. At the same time, it has provided hackers and scammers new opportunities for criminal activity. Many businesses and individuals have been victimized during real estate transactions and while refinancing property.
Use extreme caution when wiring wiring or electronically transferring funds. Emails attempting to induce fraudulent wire transfers are sent by hackers and may appear to be legitimate.
Hackers are able to intercept emailed transfer instructions, obtain account information and, by altering some of the data, redirect the funds to a different account. Hackers are also able to provide false phone numbers for verifying the wire instructions or funds transfer instructions. In those cases, the victim called the number provided to confirm the instructions, and then unwittingly authorized a transfer to somewhere or someone other than the intended recipient.
ACCORDINGLY, YOU ARE ADVISED:
1. Obtain phone numbers and account numbers only from Cruse Law Firm, PLLC through our official telephone number posted on our website.
2. DO NOT EVER WIRE FUNDS PRIOR TO CALLING TO CONFIRM THE TRANSFER INSTRUCTIONS. Do not use any different phone number or account number included in any emailed transfer instructions.
3. Orally confirm the transfer instruction is legitimate and confirm the bank routing number, account numbers and other codes before taking steps to transfer the funds.
4. Avoid sending personal information in emails or texts. Provide such information in person or over the telephone directly to our office.
5. Take steps to secure the system you are using with your email account. These steps include creating strong passwords, using secure WiFi, and not using free services.
If you believe you have received questionable or suspicious wire or funds transfer instructions, immediately notify your bank and our office!