The recent security breach at the Equifax credit reporting agency exposed extensive personal information on 143 million Americans. Computer hackers gained access to consumers’ names, addresses, social security numbers and dates of birth from Equifax files, creating serious potential problems for consumers.
If you have recently or are currently in the process of filing for bankruptcy, be on alert. There has been a phone scam circulating where individuals pose as attorneys to get their intended victims to wire money immediately to satisfy debts. These scammers lift personal information from the paperwork used in bankruptcy filings.
Although no method is full proof, we thought we would provide some information and tips on how to avoid identity theft. The tips include the following:
While this article is geared towards real estate agents, we feel it is helpful for others to be aware of. With the ever-increasing importance of the internet in our day-to-day lives, scams such as the one described below, and other email scams/solicitations, are becoming more and more common. The need to be cautious and confirm the legitimacy of any solicitation is more important than ever.
I attended a meeting this morning where it was announced that there had been a significant rise in title insurance claims in New York State. These claims are made against title insurance policies issued to either the homeowner (if he/she purchased this optional policy at the time they bought their home) or the bank lending the money for their purchase or refinance (such a policy is always required by the bank).
I read with interest a September 26, 2008, article in The Buffalo News, about an 88 year old area widow who had been bilked out of close to $80,000.00 for home improvements that were never done and were done in a shoddy fashion. My first thought was how overwhelming sad it was that in a “City of Good Neighbors” that such a thing would even occur. Not only had it occurred, but the poor woman had paid the gentleman over 71 payments that totaled the $80,000.00. Eventually, the culprit was arraigned in the Town of Cheektowaga Court, and if convicted he could face up to 15 years in prison.