Be on high alert – Scammers target WA property industry

During the last week, Consumer Protection has received reports of scams involving the property industry.  Unfortunately, some of those scams were successful, with one scam alone netting $557,000.

No organisation or person is totally safe from scammers with agents, buyers and tenants all having been targeted in these recent attacks.   Scammers are constantly finding new ways to target individuals and businesses.  Further information about the recent scams is available in this media release.

Commissioner for Consumer Protection David Hillyard has warned that there is now an urgent need for everyone involved in property transactions in WA to be on high alert.

It is imperative that real estate agencies use the highest possible security software to protect the integrity of their computer systems and email servers.

It is believed some of the recent hacking occurred as a result of people accessing email accounts via free public Wi-Fi and therefore you are cautioned about the dangers of using your business email account on open networks such as these.

Regular changing of passwords for email and bank accounts and independent verification of requests for changes to bank or contact details should be normal practice, especially in wake of these recent cases.