Guarding Against Grinches :: Navigating Wire Fraud During the Festive Season

Quick Hit :: Wire Fraud Red Flags :: Watch For These

  • Kindly. If an email asks you to "Kindly" wire funds, look out!! More than likely, this email originated off-shore.

  • RUSH!! If an email says you need to hurry and send the wire ahead of schedule due to the holiday season, verify the instructions. Most title companies have been around for a while and know how to handle things during the holiday season.

  • HURRY! Provide Confirmation The Wire Was Sent :: If you're asked to wire funds and immediately send confirmation the wire was sent, LOOK OUT! This is a fraudster asking you to alert them funds are available to withdraw.

  • Do not reply to an email or call the number on the wiring instructions. If the email address or wiring istructions are fraudulent, calling the number or responding via email will loop you back to the fraudster which will be happy to confirm everything. Contact the title company or your Realtor directly at a known good number.


Ah, the holiday season – a time for joy, celebration, and unfortunately, a heightened risk of cyber grinches attempting to steal our festive cheer. As we gather with loved ones and engage in the merriment of gift-giving and online shopping, it's crucial to be aware of the lurking threat of wire fraud. In this blog post, we'll explore the ins and outs of wire fraud during the holidays and discuss practical tips to keep your finances and festivities secure.

'Tis the Season for Cyber Scams: The holiday season is a peak time for online shopping and financial transactions. Cybercriminals are well aware of this, and they're ready to take advantage of the hustle and bustle. From phishing emails disguised as holiday deals to fraudulent websites selling nonexistent gifts, the avenues for wire fraud are numerous.

  1. The Grinch's Tactics: Wire fraud can take various forms during the holidays. One common method involves criminals posing as legitimate sellers on popular online marketplaces. They may trick you into wiring money for a fantastic deal that turns out to be too good to be true. Alternatively, phishing emails targeting holiday shoppers may lead you to fake websites, where you unwittingly share sensitive information.

  2. Protecting Your Sleigh of Savings: a. Stay Informed: Awareness is your greatest defense. Keep yourself informed about common holiday scams and stay vigilant when shopping online.

    b. Verify Sellers: Before making a purchase, verify the legitimacy of the seller. Check reviews, look for contact information, and ensure the website is secure (look for "https" in the URL).

    c. Secure Payment Methods: Opt for secure payment methods, such as credit cards, that offer fraud protection. Avoid using wire transfers for online purchases, especially from unfamiliar sources.

    d. Double-Check Emails: Be cautious with unsolicited emails, even if they seem festive. Avoid clicking on links or downloading attachments from unknown senders.

  3. Santa's Cybersecurity Checklist: a. Update Your Devices: Ensure that your computer, smartphone, and other devices are up-to-date with the latest security patches.

    b. Use Strong Passwords: 'Password123' won't cut it. Create strong, unique passwords for your online accounts, and consider using a password manager.

    c. Enable Two-Factor Authentication (2FA): Add an extra layer of security to your accounts by enabling 2FA wherever possible.

  4. Reporting the Grinches: If you do encounter suspicious activity or fall victim to wire fraud, report it promptly. Contact your bank, the online marketplace, and report phishing attempts to the appropriate authorities.

Conclusion: While the holiday season is a time for giving and sharing, it's crucial to guard against those grinches who seek to exploit the festive spirit for their gain. By staying informed, practicing good cybersecurity habits, and being vigilant during online transactions, you can help ensure that your holiday season is merry and bright, free from the unwanted intrusion of wire fraud. Wishing you a safe and secure holiday season!

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