Wire fraud is one of the most prevalent cybercrimes we face today, and scammers are only getting more sophisticated in their approaches. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), more than 2,300 complaints were received daily in 2021, leading to a staggering $6.9 billion in victim losses. In 2022, real estate transactions remained the most frequent target of wire fraud, according to a report from CertifID, a wire fraud protection company. There are even predictions that cyberattacks and scams will double by 2025.
Ways To Protect Yourself
☎️Always call to verify before you wire.
Confirm all wiring instructions in person! Always pick up the phone: it’s really important to always confirm by phone with a known number before transferring any funds. Use the contact information you were given directly. Never use phone numbers from emails or click links in emails to do so.
✋🏽Never share personal information via email.
Don't ever email your financial information. Always call the title company to give them any personal or sensitive information.
🚩Instant Red Flags To Watch Out For
- Random emails outside of business hours
- An odd sense of urgency
- Incorrect grammar or misspellings
- Email addresses with one letter "off" (this can be very hard to identify)
To learn more about how wire fraud happens and how to prevent it, watch this video about the top five real estate scams so you can protect yourself from them.