With the increased use of technology to speed up transactions, we must take care to ensure that all communications are legitimate and coming from the correct source. Here at Rafina Solicitors, we utilise the latest communication technologies in order to provide an efficient service to all our Client’s and are confident in the security of our IT Network. That being said, many large corporations have been subject to cyber-crime and we must never become complacent.
In an article by The Guardian in January 2017, a Middlesex based law firm was subjected to cyber-crime resulting in their client suffering losses of £67,000 on a conveyancing transaction. Email scams and email interception is very popular and although email security increases, these cyber-criminals try even harder to breach the security walls and some are, unfortunately, successful.
The tactic used in this case was intercepting a legitimate email from the member of the law firm and changing the bank account details for completion monies to be sent. This is an increasing popular strategy that these criminals use, especially on Fridays as there is always a surge of completions taking place on this day and in particular, the last Friday of the month.
With this in mind, we send this message with your best interests at heart. If you receive an email from our firm requesting the payment of monies, even if you are expecting it, please contact us by telephone to verify the legitimacy of the email and our bank account details.
Once any funds have been sent to our Firm’s bank account, inform us that the payment has been made and has been declared ‘successful’ by your bank. We can then check with our bank to ensure the safe delivery of your monies and will be able to report any strange activity immediately to the banks.
Lastly, if you receive an email purporting to be from our Firm, even if the domain name and the sender email address is someone from our Firm, inform us immediately and do not make any payments until we have clarified the situation.
You can read the full article from The Guardian, here: https://www.theguardian.com/money/2017/jan/14/lost-67000-conveyancing-scam-friday-afternoon-fraud-legal-sector-email-hacker