If you own a home in San Luis Obispo County or Santa Barbara County Please read the article below. I just heard about my first case in San Luis Obispo County were and agent may have been hacked and the buyer of a home sent the funds to what they thought was our local escrow. The word from the agent I talked with is on the listing side and thought the home was set to fund and record. What was explained to me was the buyer’s agent from another companies email was hacked. The email that was sent was not a secure document and the routing number on it was changed! The Buyer requested the funds to be transferred however the funds didn’t go to escrow! It’s hard to believed it happened right here on the Central Coast to an agent I know. This recently happened and I haven’t got the latest update if the funds were recovered or not, however this serves as a very important reminder that everyone in a real estate transaction should password protect non-public information to prevent these types of scams. How to prevent it? First never send funds from an email that is not protected. If you personally didn’t walk into escrow or escrow didn’t send you the email directly don’t send your funds. If you are out of the area what do you do to make sure you don’t fall victim to this type of wire fraud. I would recommend you call your escrow officer and ask them to re-read to you the number one by one as an additional verification.
It’s one thing to read about it but when you know someone that is dealing with this it hits close to home so to speak.
Please see the latest write up on Realtor.org to get more information.
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Updated: 12/17/2015 about Urgent Alert: Sophisticated Email Scams Targeting the Real Estate Industry hits home