Wednesday, November 04, 2009
House title theft is on the rise: visit FBI tip page
Here’s identity theft taken to new highs: “house theft”. Criminals, after obtaining personal information, create various accounts and fraudulent documents and then go to county or local authorities and gain control to the deeds of property.
There’s a story by Paul McNamara on Network World here.
The FBI actually has a detailed page describing how the scams work, web URL here ("House stealing: the latest scam on the block"). Some tips: if you receive a payment booklet in the mail that you don’t expect, investigate. (But don’t click on unsolicited emails related to your mortgage, as they are probably phishing attacks). It’s a good idea to check your deed at your local government once a year. Title insurance companies will have to develop practices to detect house or land title stealing.