A WELCOME VICTORY BUT MANY VICTIMS HAVE NOT BEEN SO LUCKY
Telegraph Money has heard from numerous home buyers who were left with no one to turn to after being conned into transferring money to the accounts of cyber criminals, losing an average of about £100,000.
When Ellen Wright discovered that she had been duped into paying a fraudster the £137,000 intended for the purchase of a flat in London, she called her bank, First Direct. But as it was 6.40pm on a Friday she was told it would have to wait until the next morning.
Vivian Gabb was robbed of almost £50,000 by a criminal pretending to be her solicitor. Her bank, Halifax, said: “While we sympathise with Mrs Gabb’s situation, [we] made the payment in accordance with her properly authorised instructions.”
Andrew Doyle and Susan Paul had more than £200,000 stolen over one Easter weekend. They had intended to use the money to buy their first home together.
The week after the fraud was committed the couple’s conveyancing firm, Total Conveyancing Services, added a disclaimer to its email communication including the words: “TCS will not accept responsibility if you transfer money into an incorrect account”.
In July, Telegraph Money disclosed that one in three cases of conveyancing fraud was never investigated by the police, despite the huge sums involved.