79 Replies

AS we all know its rampant...

I was just signing a sale contract on a CA flip we sold and there is now a CAR form that buyer and seller sign that delineates the risk and how to protect yourself against wire fraud.

talking to an escrow officer yesterday one of her clients lost 83k this week.

Careful out there folks.. double and triple check all wires.. do not rely on e mail.. Any one changes their wire coordinates that's a cause to get on the phone and double check.

We got hacked and stopped one potential one its was a small one 15k but still.. don't want to lose any money.. we are uber careful on this ..

@Account Closed   thanks Mike   can't think of a worse feeling to have your hard earned money stolen by these despicable thieves ... right up there with the fake lenders and their due diligence pump and dump fees..

@Jay Hinrichs   More and more people I know are actually picking up the wire instructions in person when ever possible.  That is funny, because everything else is going more and more by e-mail.  My aunt who is an investor, uses a fax and requires a password on the fax that she gives the title company.

@Jay Hinrichs , I recently sold my home (in CA )and I did see that the escrow officer included a warning about wire fraud at the bottom of each email. I also saw that CAR form as well .

Hopefully a lot of people do see this warning . Thanks for posting.

@Joseph M.   you know its serious when CA association of Realtors creates a specific disclosure form that both buyer and seller MUST sign... that is a worth while disclosure for sure.

@Jay Hinrichs All my deals are out of state. On top of that Alaskans are top targets for all types of frauds and identity theft as wages (and expenses) are generally higher here. I use a 2 part system. I receive the numbers by fax and then I call the tittle company and verify the number over the phone. If it's in a place I have done business in before I will stipulate which tittle company we use in my offers. That way I know it's a legit company. RR.

@Account Closed   its now a state of CA   CAR disclosure form.. Maybe one of the CA agents can post one on here for everyone to read.. Once you wire money and it is gone and received by the crooks they move it straight away and your money is gone forever .. Not sure how Uncle is going to address this but its a major issue within the real estate settlement community.

@Ralph R.   we use the same closers 95% of the time.. if its a new closer.. numbers are verbally verified..

the little 15k one we caught.

our vendor just happened to be on the phone with my operations manager... and he gets an email from her account saying that she is changing banks.. he ask her on the phone  Hey did you just e mail me..  she says NO..  and there you go hacker hacked her e mail and sent us a phony e mail..   Now I know all my vendors peronsally and all my closers.. so I know their voices and cell numbers..  the only one's that we send are the one's when we buy on an auction site.. but we still call and verify a few ways.. Plus I won't use the auction companies closer even though bank or seller will pay for my side of closing I pay for my own side and use my own closer... its just the cost of doing business and being safe.

@Chris Purcell   pump and dump due diligence schemes are rampant on BP  LInkden and facebook... look at the adds that say no credit  5% interest rates loans from 10k to 50 million..  call one.. explain what you got.. miraculously with little or no true information you have been approved.. you simply need to send 500.00 in for due diligence or processing fee..

Never hear from them again.. or they keep hitting you for other small dollars until they then go dark.. Been many post on BP of those that have been suckered into this and lost money.. I made one post on BP looking for a short term loan on one of my projects  ( my commercial bank I was at my limit) so thought I would try...  1 real lender 5 fakes.. replied.

Not sure what you mean CC and your covered.. fact is you wire money to a bogus account and its gone.. The minute it hits the thief's account they then move the money so no reversing it.. this is why closing companies have HUGE disclosures on each of their e mail headers or footers... its real it happens daily and its sad for those that get victimized

@Jay Hinrichs

Right I see those posts on Facebook constantly

What I'm saying with credit card fraud - you lose your card, somebody racks up $1,000 in charges - you call you your CC company and they wipe it out and investigate it for fraud but you're covered

Which is why I use my CC for hard money lender app fees!

@Chris Purcell   we are talking different things I am not talking about garden variety CC fraud.. of course you can dispute those..

what I am talking about is your e mail getting intercepted between you and your title company or closing attorney a few digits altered and you wire 100k to the wrong account.. that money is GONE and GONE forever and your SOL.

why the title companies and lawyer closers are so adamant about it is its happened to them .. and they have to cover.

your the seller you have proceeds title company says they wired it does not show up in your account.. well they have to eat it and cover it..

You the buyer.. say you wired it does not show up in the closers account.. you have to eat it.. that's the point of this whole thing its real its bad and it must be stopped.

Few reasons why wires became the way closings are done.

1.  Cashier check fraud.. title and escrow companies were getting fraudulent cashiers checks and losing big dollars so about 5 years ago they would not accept those. So they went to wires.

2. all this last minute closing.. lenders and closers cant get their act together and docs show up day before closing no time to write a personal check and wait 10 days for it to clear or 3 days or whatever.... So to facilitate this last minute closing mania that happens in the US now.. wires are a must..

ON another thread I started this week.. I paid a 100k assignment fee for a deal here in Oregon its a big one  15 to 16 million dollar development I am going to do.. and that is just land.. 75 million at build out..  and that was my largest assignment fee I ever paid.. I walked in with 12 minutes to spar on Friday with my 100k cashiers check to title.. and was lucky that Joyce the escrow officer knew me personally.. and she still had to call my bank to make sure it was good. because she had to then wire the money to a seller.. my assignee was buying another property with that dough... And luckily since I ONLY will bank with a small commercial bank.. they can call my personal banker on the spot who verified the check was good.. other wise they would not have accepted it .. if that was a BOA cashiers check or a wells or someone like that I would have missed out.. First American would not have accepted it..   this is what its come to with all the crooks out there.

But if U want to experiment go on BP market place and ask for a loan when you get a bunch of foreign sounding lenders who cant speak or write the kings English and or promise U the moon without nary any checking on your deal you will see first hand all the landing scammers out there.

@Chris Purcell   Also I see your on the west coast... you do wet closings... so checks are little more routine for you.. out our way and on the west coast its all wires.. NO ONE WRITES  a physical check anymore..

My next door neighbor a few houses down is a high level IT guy.He was saying the other day the hardest passwords have upper and low case numbers and words with words that do not go together. Like race car and sleep etc.

This is not legal advice just what came up in conversation on encryption techniques.

Wires I always triple check everything and get on the phone with them as well. I call all banks and title directly.

@Joel Owens   in your world with big dollars I would think its mandatory..  many can shake off a 10 to 50k loss

but you wire 2 million to close a deal and lose it.. well that hurts just about anyone. !!

@Chris Purcell   also if the vendor does not use the chip on your CC card and just swipes it.. you can dispute those as well and the CC will not protect the vendor.. they will only protect the vendor if the chip is used on a card with a chip..

little tid bit most don't know..

Yep down payments in the millions and commission checks in the six figures I quadruple check everything.

I can see scammers targeting smaller amounts more frequently as the buyers and sellers generally are not as sophisticated and not watching every transaction like a hawk. I am sure some are but the smaller amount might slip through the cracks. It amazes my after all these years how many bad people are out there in this world and how they sleep at night. The good ones have to try and help each other out to not be taken by the crooks of the world. 

@Steven Picker   thanks Steve that's the one.... this is forcing closers and real estate folks to acutally answer the phone and not hide behind e mail and text messaging LOL.. we have come full circle .. I am going to dig out my carbon paper.

@Mindy Jensen   can you guys post the attachment that Steve put up... in your docs area or your lender or wire fraud area.

that's a great disclosure .. would really help folks understand the risks and how to protect themselves.

Thanks for the tag, @Jay Hinrichs .  I uploaded the document AND featured this post so it appears at the top of the forum post page for a while. This message is SUPER IMPORTANT. Thanks for sharing. 

A friend just got taken for $52,000. Somehow, she was snagged by the stupidest scammer on the planet, who used American banks and left the money in the account long enough for it to be seized back. She ended up getting her money back, but it was a nightmare from beginning to end. I blame her local, crappy title company for it.

Now she's going through the nightmare of having purchased a rehabbed home from someone who did all the work himself, despite not knowing how to do any of the work. Once she sells this house, she's probably never going to own another one again.

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