Cyber Fraud: how do our team protect you?
Posted on 15th January 2020
According to a UK Finance report, email redirection fraud was a lucrative tool in the criminal underworld, accruing £123.7 million from UK account holders in 2018 alone. Of the 7,544 malicious redirection scams completed over 9000 payments were made with an average individual loss of £20,750.00. These statistics highlight the importance of ensuring that the people you are communicating with via email are legitimate.
Back in September 2019, Mr Dudeja and his wife were targeted by fraudsters who hacked into their property solicitor’s email system telling them to send over their £45,000.00 deposit for the purchase of their new property. The £45,000 deposit was then sent from their Lloyds savings account to a fraudulent HSBC account in North London. Lloyds have refused to refund the couple as they say Mr Dueja did not take sufficient care when making the transfer. HSBC have refused to take liability despite the account being opened using a company which does not exist. You can read more on this here.
So, what are MG Legal, your local property solicitors, doing to protect you?
Staff knowledge - Firstly, there is a legally-qualified member of staff at our each of our three offices, so you will always be able to discuss your matter, be it property, family, of personal injury related, with a legally qualified member of the team. Secondly, our staff are trained to be extra vigilant when communicating with Clients and other firms. You will note that we will always write out to you via email and via post as well. We ensure that our staff are aware of the tactics being used by cyber criminals. Often if we are unsure of the source of an email, we will also ask for contact details so that we can both telephone and write to an address requesting a response before engaging in any lengthy email correspondence. All of our staff know that if they are uncertain as to the origin of an email, caution is always better, and the IT department will be asked to look at the email before the same is responded to, forwarded or any links on the email are opened.
We explain the process – it has been noted that Conveyancing Departments are in particular targeted for this type of fraud so we always explain the process. Our bank details are on the Client Care documentation which is sent to you, by post, at the beginning of the transaction so if we do send bank details to you via email the bank details can be checked against those which you already have. If we do send you bank details, we will always send them as a PDF attachment to the email, ensuring that we telephone you to confirm that we are sending you the completion statement and bill. By explaining the process, we can provide client’s with guidance so that if something appears to happen out of sequence, you can let us know and ask why this is happening.
Communication – we will always telephone you and let you know when we intend to send you the completion statement and bill. If we have to ask you to send your bank details via email we will call you to confirm your account and sort code before sending funds out to you and we ask that you always confirm when the funds have been received in your account.
Technology – Our IT department are up to date with the latest technology which makes it difficult for fraudsters to hack our computer systems or clone our emails.
For more information about how we are putting our Clients first contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 01995 602 129.
MG Legal - Your Local Solicitors
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