Wire fraud is a HUGE problem that only keeps getting bigger and bigger.
In fact, U.S. Representative Randy Hultgren (R-III) wrote a letter to Fed Chairman Jerome Powell on June 29th urging the Fed to be more proactive in regard to wire fraud and real estate transactions. The letter referenced the United Kingdom’s system of matching payees’ names as a possible solution to the problem of wire fraud.
However, we don’t have to wait until a federal law is passed that orders banks to match the payee name on the wire transfer payment to name on the payee’s destination bank account (“Beneficiary Bank”).
As title and escrow agents, we can be proactive and in partnership with the banks with which we do business.
So, what can we do right now?
First, we can know what our Agreement with our Escrow Account Bank says.
Does your Bank Agreement say that your bank will check the payee’s name with the name on the destination account when a wire fund transfer is initiated?
Or, does it say your bank need only rely upon the account number it was provided in the wiring instructions order? The answers to these questions might lead to an opportunity to have a discussion with your partnering Receiving Bank.
We can also send the wire instructions on the payment order, with explicit directions that acceptance be restricted to match the designated payee’s name on the Beneficiary Bank account. If it doesn’t match, then do not send the funds.
Lastly, if something does go wrong despite our best efforts and precautions, then notify both the Beneficiary Bank and the Receiving Bank as soon as possible. Typically, banks require notification of an unauthorized transfer or error within a defined time period such as, for example, thirty or sixty days.
Aside from any contractual or legal requirement for early notification, the sooner the problem is communicated, the greater the odds of the bank being able to halt or pull back the wire funds transfer.
For a great explanation of how a wire fund transfer works behind the scenes, view “Funds Transfer Law and Unauthorized Payment Liability.”
Partnership provides Alliant National independent title agents access to advanced, efficient cybersecurity technology solutions
LONGMONT, Colo. – Alliant National Title Insurance Company (Alliant National) and Cloudstar recently announced a strategic partnership that allows Alliant National’s independent title agents access to Cloudstar’s cybersecurity advanced technology platform. This platform also includes project management tools designed to increase productivity.
Cloudstar is a multi-national technology platform that provides secure infrastructure, cloud hosting, data center colocation, email encryption and managed information technology services and support to regulated industries in the United States, Canada and South America.
“In a cloud-first world, title agents need easier ways to work while still utilizing their existing settlement services software,” said Gregory McDonald, CEO of Cloudstar. “Cloudstar makes it easy to run existing software in the cloud while accessing it from anywhere. Together, the Alliant National and Cloudstar partnership will provide Alliant National’s independent agents with both the tools they need to be more productive and the cybersecurity products they need to increase security and help prevent wire fraud.”
“We are all very excited about this new partnership and we’re glad to provide this opportunity for our independent agents to work with Cloudstar,” said Mike Rubin, Alliant National’s vice president of business development. “Alliant National Title Insurance Company agents will benefit from this partnership by enjoying a dedicated Cloudstar account manager, access to new products and services before they are released to the public, as well as special offers and pricing incentives.”
Visit alliantnational.com/newsroom for additional information.
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About Alliant National Title Insurance Company
The Independent Underwriter for The Independent Agent®, Alliant National believes in putting other people first. The company protects the dreams of property owners with secure title insurance and partners with 400+ trusted independent title agents as a licensed underwriter in 22 states, with annual revenues exceeding $110 million. Visit joinalliantnational.com for additional information.
Cloudstar is a multi-national provider of virtual desktop hosting, hosted software and applications, custom tailored IT infrastructure design, email encryption, managed services, IT security, and consulting to regulated industries across the United States, Canada, and South America.
Cloudstar started in 2009 as Cloudstar Consulting Corporation and was created to meet the unique needs of the land title industry. As the company grew from a consulting and IT infrastructure design firm, Cloudstar Consulting Corporation re-branded as simply “Cloudstar”, a DBA of the newly formed holdings company, Keystone Management Group, LLC. In 2014, Cloudstar purchased a 50% interest in U.S. Telecommunications firm, Teletonix Communications in addition to adding Diologix, an electronic medical records encryption company and Notary Transfer to its portfolio of brands. As of 2017, Cloudstar has expanded to provide services to the entirety of the United States, Canada and Mexico with offices in three states and privately held infrastructure co-located at five U.S data centers.
Today, Cloudstar services the needs of tens of thousands of end users from small firms to publicly traded companies. For more information, please visit MyCloudstar.com.