Agency Operations

Fraud Insights Vol. 1 Issue 7 PDF Print E-mail

All the Classic Signs

By Lisa A. Tyler
National Escrow Administrator

Welcome to the seventh edition of Fraud Insights, your source for the latest stories about fraud and forgery in the real estate industry and more importantly, your source for tips and tools about the prevention of fraud and forgery in your own transactions.

Forgery is one of the hidden risks that title insurance covers. This crime is frequently characterized as "white collar crime" and as such receives less attention from law enforcement agencies than other, more visible types of crime. The lack of attention by law enforcement agencies and their difficulty in proving forgery has led to a significant increase in forgery claims for the Company and the title insurance industry as a whole.

As a result, the Company has established a reward program for the detection of forgeries. This program is a significant commitment by the Company to encourage all employees to become more vigilant in the detection of such matters and the prevention of losses occasioned by such crimes.

Incidents of heroics by employees who derailed crime in their transactions should be reported to the National Escrow Administrators via e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or telephone at 888.934.3354. Heroic employees are selected on a monthly basis to receive rewards based on their efforts to protect the Company against claims and losses.

Speaking of rewards! Congratulations to Gay McGough, an Alamo Title Escrow Officer in Arlington, Texas. She is this month's $500 reward recipient. Gay used her gut instincts and recognized all of the classic signs of a less than honorable seller and was able to uncover two unpaid liens, one to the state and one to the IRS. Read all about it in this issue of Fraud Insights!

Find out how a former bank teller turned escrow employee was able to spot a fake identification in her transaction in the article "Is It Genuine?"

In the June edition, we provided a "Forgery Prevention Checklist" for your use in detecting fraud and forgery in your own transactions. This month we share "Red Flag Warnings" that were received by one of our Company's seasoned escrow officers who prevented forgery in her own transactions.

If you are an FNTG employee and received this eNewsletter secondhand, then we do not have your contact information. Please send your e-mail address to us at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it and we will add you to our monthly mailing list, so you don't have to wait for your neighbor to pass it on.

If you attempted to print previous editions of this electronic newsletter and were unable to capture the full content, please note the printing issue has been resolved beginning with this edition of Fraud Insights.

In the Nick of Time

Time is money and TIMING IS EVERYTHING!

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Is It Genuine?

A former bank teller spots a fake identification using the hologram.

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Red Flag Warnings!

One of the Company's most seasoned escrow officers recently submitted some "Red Flag Warnings" she has used to detect and prevent forgery in her own files.

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