Her loan officer told her to wire a $100,000 down payment, so she did.
The Washington woman didn’t think much of it. The request came from her loan officer’s email account.
Turns out a scammer had hacked into the loan officer’s account and emailed the instructions to wire the payment to a bank account in Nevada.
It was only after she’d wired the money that the woman discovered her loan officer’s email had been compromised.
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The woman was able to get her money back, but state officials warn that isn’t usually the case.
“It is often impossible to get money back after it’s wired,” according to a state Department of Financial Institutions news release.
Here’s what to do if you receive an email with instructions to wire money:
▪ Look up the phone number of the person who emailed you and call to verify the email came from them. Do not call any phone numbers in the email.
▪ Call the escrow agent or title company and verify if the instructions are legitimate.
▪ If you decide to wire money, verify that the money transmitter is licensed by looking them up at www.dfi.wa.gov
▪ If you feel you have been the victim of a scam, call the Federal Trade Commission at1-877-FTC-HELP (382-4357) or online at www.ftc.gov; or the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau at 1-855-411-CFPB (2372) or online atwww.consumerfinance.gov.
Stacia Glenn: 253-597-8653