Tag Archives: Fraud

Real Estate Transactions Wire Fraud Alert!

It is no surprise the creative bad guys sitting behind computer screens somewhere have found another weak spot in the system. The problem with this one is, it is usually of size.

Real Estate Fraud Alertfraud-2695269_960_720

One of the larger financial transactions many of us make are the purchase of some type of Real Estate. With money, paperwork, and stress sloshing around, it is no wonder the bad guys have squeezed into this arena.

Here is what is going on:

  • After a hack into the system somewhere-
  • Email is sent to one of the parties, stating there is an updated wire account number-
  • In the foray of movement one party fails to verify the new account information-
  • Bam, the funds are wired and disappear-

How to stop it:

  • Confirm ANY email change with your opposite party-
  • Call one last time and check “In Person” with the other party before wiring – just to be safe
  • Get your Fed wire number confirmation after the wire-
  • Confirm your receiving party did in fact, receive the funds

If it is convenient, a cashiers check may be easier/safer– but hold on tight to that check after issue and double confirm how to make the check payable if this is the way you choose to go.

While the above steps look simple, and the bad guys easy to spot, in the heat of the moment, things can slip through the cracks.

Measure twice, cut once!

Have a great “Less Fraud” Day!

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.
A Dallas Texas based fee only
Financial Planning Total Wealth
Management firm.
www.jkfinancialinc.com
www.street-cents.com

 

What to do when your Identity is Stolen?

Based on the repeat occurences and popularity of our cyber and most recent Identity updates we wanted to give guidance on ways to help after an invasive event such as this has happened.

Identity theft by our definition is the attempt by someone to utilize your information, either live in person or electronicallly to gain access to your credit or other financial assets.

What to do when your Identiy is Stolen?

First breath easy, you are not the first, will not be the last, and most likely will only incur minor nuances from the event.

Here is a link to the Federal Trade Commissions site on Fraud Alerts. This is our favorite “Go-To” source. It has an enormous amount of sources and information. This directly from the site …

Why Place an Initial Fraud Alert

Three national credit reporting companies keep records of your credit history. If someone has misused your personal or financial information, call 1 of the companies and ask for an initial fraud alert on your credit report. A fraud alert is free. You must provide proof of your identity. The company you call must tell the other companies about your alert.

An initial fraud alert can make it harder for an identity thief to open more accounts in your name. When you have an alert on your report, a business must verify your identity before it issues credit, so it may try to contact you. The initial alert stays on your report for at least 90 days. You can renew it after 90 days. It allows you to order one free copy of your credit report from each of the three credit reporting companies. Be sure the credit reporting companies have your current contact information so they can get in touch with you.

Instruction From the Federal Trade Commission:

FTC Fraud Alert Screen (2)

 

Place a Fraud Alert Electronically

CAUTION – Be extremely careful when using these systems as they will try to have you sign up for a monthly service. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO SIGN UP FOR THIS SERVICE. There is a government mandated 90 day free service.

I use Transunion and they also offer a much more detailed free extended service that requires paperwork sent to them that allows a seven year watch.

Identiy Theft Recovery Plan

Depending on the severity of the attack, you may want to contact the Federal Trade Commission at https://www.identitytheft.gov/ to have them help you set up a recovery plan.

This government site will help you create letters for creditors, debtors as well as specific disputed transactions.

We recommend these actions if someone was successful in gaining access to and withdrawl or charges in your name.

Credit Freeze

Credit Freeze via Federal Trade Commission

What’s the difference between a credit freeze and a fraud alert?

A credit freeze locks down your credit. A fraud alert allows creditors to get a copy of your credit report as long as they take steps to verify your identity. For example, if you provide a telephone number, the business must call you to verify whether you are the person making the credit request. Fraud alerts may be effective at stopping someone from opening new credit accounts in your name, but they may not prevent the misuse of your existing accounts. You still need to monitor all bank, credit card and insurance statements for fraudulent transactions.

Other Paid Sources

There are various outside services that complete much of this for your. One of the more marketed is LifeLock. These sources can be very useful in creating a one-stop-shop aggregation for your credit protection. We are not recommending any of these services, only wishing to make you aware.

Lastly

While the credit agencies, creditors, govenment and the general public become more sophisticated in watching and protecting ourselves from intrusions, we expect the culprits will also become more sophisticated in their attacks. The good news is prevention and awaremeness will most likely help in only minor nuancances in the future!

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.
A Dallas Texas based fee only
Financial Planning Total Wealth
Management firm.
www.jkfinancialinc.com
www.street-cents.com

Tax Fraud Update … April Fools Friday

Next week we have our end of the month review and the Newsletter hits mailboxes …two Videos …  better get started now ! But First… let’s finish this week….

Tax Fraud Update

We are now up to over 9 instances of tax related fraud. Good news is that no one has had ANY harm, only inconveniences. We are amazed at the volume of attempts. One item we may point out, there are a large amount of repeat offenses. If you had trouble last year, be on careful watch. If you have not had any prior issues…. Keep that guard up !

April Fools FridayApril Fools

Our vocal venue is fun and we do try to make it entertaining, but our subject matter is too serious (maybe we are too much of nerds -haha)  there will be no April fools here …. That does not clear you from everyone else today….so watch out, and have fun!

Have a Happy Friday !

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.
A Dallas Texas based fee only
Financial Planning Total Wealth
Management firm.
www.jkfinancialinc.com
www.street-cents.com