Monday, May 23, 2016

Wire Fraud Alert

by Osman Parvez
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Heads up Boulder.  The following fraud was reported by our local realtor association: 

1. A hacker hacked into an agent's email account, monitored a current transaction, and started communicating with the client as if they were the agent. 

2. They created filters in the email account to bypass the inbox and hide the emails in a folder they created called "notes".  

3. They used language similar to what the agent would use, previous email threads the agent actually sent to make it look more legit, and pertinent (accurate) details regarding the transaction requesting funds to be wired.  

4. They asked the client to "email rather than text" because "I will be in meetings all day" or in "open house shows all day" and can't respond via phone or text. 

5. The client wired $20,000 to the hacker for "an additional refundable binder deposit" that the title company was supposedly asking for.

6. The account it was wired to is in Aurora, CO

7. Upon completing the first $20,000 the hacker then asked for an additional $50,000. This is when the client contacted the agent and the fraud was discovered.

8. The hackers accessed her account from computers in California (various locations spanning from San Francisco to Los Angeles). 

This incident has been reported to the FBI and Colorado Law Enforcement.

Please be on high alert. Do not wire funds without independently verifying wiring information. Do not rely on email for that verification, call the title company directly.

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