AUSTIN, TX. – There’s no denying that buying a home can be a complicated process for anyone and when you add in the fact that there’s dozens of documents to be filled out it’s easy to get caught up in the closing process and not realize that you’ve been scammed by someone claiming to be a title insurance company and is asking you to pay closing costs.
Thanks to a recent notification by the Federal Trade Commission we know that more scammers are coming out of the woodwork to take advantage of home buyers via a new phishing scheme where they tell the home buyer that closing costs need to be paid.
How Does The Scam Work?
Sadly, this scam starts when the scammer hacks into a home buyer in Austin or their Realtor’s® email account and from there they will have access to closing dates. The scammer will then email the buyer a change at the last minute which will include new wiring instructions and if the buyer doesn’t verify the bank account with the title company they will end up sending the funds via wire transfer to the scammers bank account.
Millions of Dollars Lost
Over the last 10 years this type of scam has been in existence and sadly it gets more refined every year since scammers can now create a similar website, phone numbers and addresses to make it look like they are the title company even when they are not even located in the same country.
To avoid this title scam when buying a home make sure you do the following:
- Don’t email your financial information to anyone since email is not secure.
- Avoid entering your personal or financial information away online unless it’s a secure website and has an https on the URL instead of http.
- Use caution when opening documents and always call your Realtor® or mortgage lender first to verify who sent them.
To learn more about common scams to avoid when buying a home or to view homes for sale in Austin Texas contact the Kent Redding Group today by calling us at (512) 306-1001 or CLICK HERE to connect with us online.