CertifID, a real-time identity verification platform for real estate, is now protecting all wire transfers that are initiated by a buyer in connection with a real estate closing for up to $1 million in loss for a single fee of $4.95.
This expanded coverage includes wire transfers relating to earnest money deposit (EMD) as well as transfers required to fully consummate the transaction (i.e., cash to close funds).
The company seeks to provide an “end to end” solution to protect all funds sent by buyers even if they are coming at different times from more than one financial institution.
CertifID offers its customers the ability to confirm identity and securely send or verify bank account credentials before money is sent via wire or ACH transfer.
As Thomas Cronkright, CEO and co-founder of CertifID, explains in a release, wire fraud scams continue to be a target from cyber criminals around the globe and home buyers are the main targets.
“Real estate transactions are ripe for business email compromise scams due to the number of parties involved in a transaction, high per-wire transfer amounts and the ability to easily profile active transactions online,” Cronkright says. “The greatest threat is to a buyer who is required to wire funds for the closing of a home. Armed with transaction level details that they have obtained after obtaining access to someone’s email, the cyber perpetrators deploy social engineering strategies that convince a buyer to wire their life savings away to a fraudster who is posing as the title or settlement company. This is simply unacceptable and it is our mission to prevent it.”
CertifID’s expanded offering will allow title and settlement providers to securely send wiring instructions to a buyer early in the transaction cycle and allow the buyer to rely on those instructions for all wire transfers that are required to close.
“This is a significant step to protect buyers and creates a trusted communication mode early in the process so that buyers know any subsequent communication with different wiring instructions are fraudulent,” adds Camille Wright Brannon, CEO of Campbell & Brannon, a law firm based in Atlanta that specializes in real estate closings.