Disturbing statistics from NAR about wire fraud: There was a 136% increase in worldwide losses between December 2016 and May 2018 from sophisticated scams targeting both businesses and individuals performing wire transfer payments. Scams targeting the real estate sector, specifically, rose 1,100% from 2015 to 2017, with an estimated loss of more than $1.6 billion between June 2016 and May 2018 in the U.S. alone."
Don't let your client be a statistic....there is a new trend in the world of real estate wire fraud. Thieves are now bold enough to CALL buyers and sellers of real estate posing as escrow/title and providing wire instructions over the phone. Please educate your client early on in the process to EXPECT scammers to be on the prowl. This may scare them, but honestly, we should all be scared. It is better to be safe than sorry. Tell them to take the initiative and time to independently verify escrow/title contact info. They need to make a call to that verified number to confirm wiring info before making any transfer of funds. Do not forward wire instructions to your client over email, do not participate in that part of the deal, it is TOO RISKY to you and them! Fake wire instructions are made to look real for a reason.