Hacking and Wire Fraud Scams:  A $3.1 Billion Problem!

 

 

Certified Public Accountants, Lawyers, and Real Estate, Title and Escrow Agents are among the growing list of professionals that are targets of hacking and wire fraud claims.  In June 2016 The FBI issued Public Service Announcement identifying an increase of 1,300% in exposed losses since January, 2015, amounting to a $3.1 billion scam (FBI Public Service Announcement PSA 1-061416). If you have not yet seen a hacking/wire fraud claim yet, it is just a matter of time!

 

 As traditional “paper and pen” industries transition to “paperless”  environments and more communications are sent digitally, commonplace transactions are becoming more and more susceptible to hackers and scammers. The thought of fraudsters being able to gain access to your insureds's computers and track each and every key stroke, let alone all transactions involving the transfer of funds, provides strong motivation for fraudsters to seek hacking opportunities.

 

 Over the next few weeks, Shendell & Pollock will be circulating a series of legal alerts on developments in this area based upon claims our firm is providing representation. In this series we will be focusing upon:

 

 1. How hacking scams are perpetrated and the fact the technology and software available to fraudsters continues to become more sophisticated.

 2. The “red flags” Plaintiff’s counsel focus upon in alleging insureds should have prevented the fraud from occurring.

 3. Best practices and fraud prevention tips that can be utilized to both avoid thefts from hackers and assist in the defense of these claims.

 At Shendell & Pollock we are defending professionals in these hacking scams, as well as providing risk management training to accountants, lawyers, and real estate professionals as well as underwriters.