in this issue

By Lisa A. Tyler
National Escrow Administrator

This is a first for Our Company – an employee decides to endorse and deposit recording fee checks into their own personal account! Is this a sign of the times? Find out how a title officer stole recording fee checks for years before he was finally caught by his co–workers in the story entitled "RECORDING fee rip off."

If the first story doesn't scare you to death and make you suspicious of everyone, then read "STOLEN payoff check," a story about a check stolen right out of the UPS® delivery van. The check was duplicated several times and successfully cashed once, leaving the mortgage it was intended to pay completely unpaid – while also accruing penalties and interest.

"DEAD and gone" is the third story in this edition. It provides the details of a simple keying error by an escrow officer on an outgoing wire form which also went undetected by the counter–signer. Those two mistakes caused a loss of $536,000 plus outside attorney fees. To date, we have not recovered the funds.

The Company has rewarded heroic employees $93,000…you could be next! We would love to hear your story. In addition to sharing heroic stories, Fraud Insights is intended to provide helpful tips and tricks to aid in the prevention of losses and claims. Even though the last two stories in this edition did not involve employees who saved the day, they hope their stories will prevent you from making their same mistakes.


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