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Title Fraud – Is this a real thing?

 

When you think about a home robbery, you usually tend to think about someone walking out of a home with your possessions under their arm. Well, in the times of fraud and identity theft when we talk about home robbery, it might mean someone is stealing your actual property with you still leaving there and paying the mortgage!

Crooks are out there thinking about their next scam, and the newest thing is going after the deed of your home.  Most of us, once we buy a home, will not even worry about the deed to the house until it is time to sell it and that is what these scammers are betting on.

Their first step is to steal your identity, so they can produce fake documents, go to your county’s recorder’s office, and do a quit claim deed, passing the ownership of the house to whomever they want. Yes, someone can sell your house and pass the ownership of the house without you even knowing that it happened!

As in all crimes, the authorities are already keeping an eye on such crimes and the FBI have been on the lookout as far back as 2008 as you can see from this article on the FBI’s website. (https://archives.fbi.gov/archives/news/stories/2008/march/housestealing_032508 ).  The increased number of cases will only help authorities come up with new security rules in order to prevent it.

In the meantime, you can follow some rules in order to stay safe. The first one would be to monitor your credit and keep on the lookout for any signs of your identity being stolen. If you believe that your identity was stolen, barring any steps you may have taken to safeguard your information, make sure to do a deed search to make sure no one has done anything.  Another step to keep it safe is to once or twice a year check on any deed(s) of any property you might have.

Like identity theft, this is a very hard threat to completely safeguard against, but by keeping an eye on your information, you will be able to catch any issues early and keep it from becoming a bigger issue.

For information on protecting your identity visit www.veritaslegalplan.com/Blog/LegalPlan/CreditMonitoring  .

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