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While the vast majority of transactions between homebuyers and conveyancers are a success, it’s important that people are aware of the risks cyber fraud can pose to buyers’ home deposits.
In recent years hundreds of homebuyers have fallen victim to a type of fraud that sees hackers intercepting conveyancers’ emails and changing the bank details included within them.
Such a move can see property buyers paying thousands of pounds to fraudsters rather than transferring their deposit to their solicitor as planned.
Although the consequences of this type of cyber crime can be significant, there are ways to protect your clients’ data and ensure their money doesn’t fall into the wrong hands.
There are various ways that a fraudster may try to steal money from homebuyers during the property process, but the most common involves hacking into solicitors’ email accounts and sending fraudulent emails on their behalf.
Some hackers will access the homebuyer’s email address, deleting legitimate emails before the buyer gets chance to see them and replacing them with fraudulent messages.
There have also been cases where fraudsters send emails from an email address that looks very much like the solicitor’s before asking for money to be transferred to a particular account.
Long and strong passwords are one of the simplest yet most effective ways of minimising the risk that fraudulent activity can pose to your business and your customers’ money.
Take a look at our guide on how to create strong yet memorable passwords to learn more. Don’t forget to share it with members of staff so that everyone understands the importance of protecting their emails.
Anti-virus software can make a tremendous difference to the safety of your company data and your customers’ personal information. With the help of up-to-date anti-virus tools, you can prevent phishing attacks and detect malware before it has an impact.
When you start working with a new client, encourage them to give you a call or pop into your office if they ever receive bank details from you via email. There’s nothing inherently wrong with emailing your account number and sort code to your customers, but by ensuring they call you to confirm the details, you can avoid falling victim to fraudulent activity.
If you feel as though you have limited cyber security knowledge, you’re certainly not the only one. In a 13-question survey from the Pew Research Center in the US, only four cyber security questions were answered correctly by more than 50% of respondents.
Whether you’re struggling to understand multi-factor authentication or you’re unsure whether or not your email is encrypted, it’s often wise to seek help from the experts.
You don’t need to have extensive cyber security knowledge to protect your company data and clients’ money. With the help of an IT support company, you can focus on helping your clients buy homes while a team of experienced technicians focus on keeping everything safe and secure.