At Old Republic Title, our wire fraud drill consists of three important steps:
- STOP!: If you receive an email or text with wiring instructions, do not reply. If you receive a phone call with wiring instructions, tell the caller you’re going to hang up to verify the information.
- CALL: To make sure you have received a legitimate request, call a trusted phone number you have used before to contact the buyer, seller, agent, lender or escrow officer, or use a number written in the contract. Do NOT use a number listed in the email sent to you or call the number that texted you. There could be a fraudster on the other end of the call, ready to trick you into diverting funds to their account.
- VERIFY: After calling a trusted number, talk to the person that the email, text or call was said to have come from. Verify that there has been a change to wiring instructions.
It is extremely rare that wiring instructions will change during a real estate transaction, so verify any change with all parties before you adjust your actions. By keeping this wire fraud drill in mind, you can do your part to stop funds from winding up in the hands of a cybercriminal.