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#cyberfraud | #cybercriminals | Protecting Real Estate for Data Privacy Day — RISMedia |

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

Jan. 28 is Data Privacy Day, as set by the National Cyber Security Alliance’s (NCSA) Data Privacy Day campaign. The NCSA provides various resources on its website, including instructions on how businesses can protect themselves, detect fraud, respond quickly and recover if they have fallen victim.

How do these translate into real estate best practices?

Protect
The NCSA recommends that businesses keep software current, ensure updates are set to automatically install, implement stronger authentication processes, back up all information either in the cloud or on a hard drive, limit access to sensitive data and stay vigilant.

For real estate agents and brokers, that means keeping vulnerable data, such as transaction paperwork with client signatures, protected by double verification, as well as backed up to a secure location. Platforms such as DocuSign and ShelterZoom are helping to make transactions more secure in real estate by using technology such as encryption and blockchain.

According to Chen Konfino, chief executive of Younity, an app that allows users to remotely access their digital files from their computers using their mobile devices, who was interviewed by the New York Times, individuals can also protect themselves by using a VPN (virtual private network) on their device, which will encrypt their traffic and block emails from being intercepted.

Detect
Knowing what to look for is the first step. According to the NCSA, businesses should pay attention to any unusual requests, especially though email, that direct them to click unknown links or open suspect attachments. Brokerages can reduce the chance of fraud by implementing office-wide training sessions that teach agents how to detect scams, proceed safely and safeguard their information.

Respond
If an individual suspects fraud, what is the appropriate course of action? The NCSA recommends that they disconnect any computers that may have been compromised and bring in an IT team to take a look. Additionally, if widespread and severe enough, they should also contact law enforcement and retain legal counsel.

Due to the nature of real estate, in which brokerages can have hundreds of agents across multiple offices, any individuals who suspect fraud should immediately notify their broker so they can ensure the breach is not extensive.

Scams to Look Out For
According to the New York Times, the FBI has reported 3,766 instances of real estate scams between October 2014 and October 2019, with losses reaching nearly $339 million.

The best way to protect data? Know what the scams are. In 2019, several REALTORS® reported receiving texts and phone calls from 800-874-6500—the toll-free number for the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR). However, NAR reported it was not making these calls and they were fraudulent.

Scams happen often on the consumer side, as well. REALTORS® should educate their clients about the most common types of fraud they may encounter, which can include:

  • Wire transfer requests via email – All requests should be confirmed by the agent or attorney, in person or by phone.
  • Illegitimate rental or for-sale listings for which the “landlord” or “seller” requests payment upfront, such as a security deposit or down payment. These fraudsters often claim to require these deposits in advance and then disappear with the money.
  • Emails asking for sensitive information – Consumers should look for warning signs such as grammar and spelling errors, suspicious email addresses and phone numbers or addresses in their signature that cannot be verified.

Several organizations are taking the lead on fraud prevention in real estate. For example, Title Resource Group (TRG) recently launched a campaign, in the form of a game, to help educate agents and consumers about fraud.

NAR provides a Data Security and Privacy Toolkit to help educate industry professionals about how to protect their data and comply with legal requirements. The toolkit includes state law information and any pending federal regulations on the subject of data security, as well as checklists for implementing a data security program.

Brokers and agents, share your experiences with us and let us know what you are doing to protect your data.

Liz Dominguez is RISMedia’s senior editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at ldominguez@rismedia.com.

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#deepweb | Raphael Varane Brace Leads Real Madrid to Easy 3-0 Win vs. Getafe | Bleacher Report

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans Quality Sport Images/Getty Images Raphael Varane scored twice as Real Madrid beat Getafe 3-0 in their first La Liga match of 2020 on Saturday at the Coliseum Alfonso Perez. Los Blancos took the lead on 34 minutes after goalkeeper David Soria failed to punch Ferland Mendy’s cross clear, […] View full post on AmIHackerProof.com

#cyberfraud | #cybercriminals | How compromised emails enable cybercrime and real estate scams — Quartz

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans The CEO of an unidentified Swiss company was scammed out of nearly $1 million by a multinational fraud ring, according to a criminal complaint unsealed last week in federal court. The executive, who is identified in the filing only as “S.K.,” was in the process of […] View full post on AmIHackerProof.com

#hacking | There’s a ‘real awakening’ about the threat of 2020 election hacking

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

At least governments are becoming cognizant of — and more willing to pre-emptively act on — the threat to the election process from cybercriminals.

“Post 2016 [election], I think there has been a real awakening as to the threat that is out there. So that’s the good news on this end that people are aware this has happened and want to protect against it happening,” CrowdStrike co-founder and CEO George Kurtz tells Yahoo Finance.

Obviously, many politicians in the U.S. were badly asleep at the technological switch during the 2016 presidential campaign. It’s something they hope to avoid — by spending on key cybersecurity tech from the likes of CrowdStrike — into the 2020 election.

In July, the Senate Intelligence Committee said in a report that election systems in all 50 states were targeted by Russia in the 2016 presidential election between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. And just earlier this month, the same committee said in a new report that bad online actors in Russia could target the 2020 presidential election.

President Trump has continuously denied Russia played any role in his winning of the presidency.

Recall that CrowdStrike was called on by the Democratic National Committee to investigate the 2016 hack of its email and chat systems. CrowdStrike and several other cybersecurity firms found that Russian intelligence agencies were responsible for the DNC hack.

Some of the Facebook and Instagram ads linked to a Russian effort to disrupt the American political process and stir up tensions around divisive social issues, released by members of the U.S. House Intelligence committee, are photographed in Washington. Russia’s interference in the 2016 U.S. election has generally been seen as two separate, unrelated tracks: hacking Democratic emails and sending provocative tweets. But a new study suggests the tactics were likely intertwined. On the eve of the release of hacked Clinton campaign emails, Russian-linked trolls retweeted messages from thousands of accounts on both extremes of the American ideological spectrum. (AP Photo/Jon Elswick, File)

The work CrowdStrike did for the DNC — coupled with its leadership position in the security cloud market — have it teed up to win new business from governments ahead of the 2020 election. CrowdStrike received the important FedRAMP certification last year, and is now able to pitch for new business from government agencies.

“Given the technology that we have and the ability to stop breaches, it has been very well received not only in the Fed market but also in state and local governments. And I think you’ve seen a lot of those stories specifically around ransomware. Given our AI and our machine learning, we’ve been able to prevent those ransomware attacks for our customers without any signature updates or any changes,” Kurtz told analysts on a Sept. 5 earnings call.

Kurtz added, “We think both Fed and state and local government are great opportunities for us, and we’re really excited about those as we get into the buying season, particularly in the Fed space.”

Brian Sozzi is an editor-at-large and co-anchor of The First Trade at Yahoo Finance. Follow him on Twitter @BrianSozzi

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Scammers Stealing Down Payments By Hacking Real Estate Agents’ Email Accounts

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

Buying a home is the biggest purchase most Americans will make during their lifetime. But now hackers have figured out how to steal the down payment, leaving the buyer without a new home and often wiping out their life savings. “The timing was impeccable, actually,” said Kristina Soloviena, a real…

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Scammers Are Constructing Fake People to Get Real Credit Cards

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

On a warm day in May, agents from the FBI and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service descended on a leafy neighborhood in South Carolina and raided the home of a DJ suspected of using fake identities to obtain 558 credit cards from Capital One Financial Corp. Outside the house in…

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Be Alert! Hackers Are Stealing Millions From Buyers By Using These Real Estate Scams

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

Tight Inventory Continues To Dog Housing Market Steve starts his Real Estat Roundup segment by asking Terry how long a typical For Sale house stays on the market before it gets a confirmed buyer. Terry says the national average was 27 days for the month of May 2017, well below…

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Money transfer hack: Threat is real and what to do about it

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans Remittance transactions in the UAE continue to be vulnerable to hackers and financial institutions must work closely with intelligence units in order to mitigate the risk of customers losing millions of dirhams to cybercriminals, a currency firm said. The UAE … The post Money transfer hack: […]

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Maybe Married? Online Dating Gets Real

Sometimes you talk to someone and the conversation is so easy; every detail you learn makes you like this person more and more, until the one that doesn’t. Enter, Maybe Married, aka “MM.” I must confess that this date never happened; maybe after all this, I have learned something?! MM and I started messaging on the app where we met, which soon turned into texting, and then phone calls. He was witty, smart, and like me, left a more traditional career path to pursue something he loved. Read More….

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Hackers Target Real Estate Deals

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Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

Hackers Target Real Estate Deals

Years of hard-earned savings – gone in an instant. One family saw the down payment on their dream home stolen by a hacker.
“It’s devastating to live thru and find out your dreams have changed.”
This picturesque property was

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