Real estate fraud by bank transfer

A house to sell. Thomas Northcut/Getty Images

Here are three of the top financial news stories of the week, gathered from around the web:

Real estate fraud by bank transfer

Potential buyers have a new scam to worry about, says Natalie Wong in Bloomberg Businessweek: hackers steal their deposits. Real estate cable fraud is on the rise, with hackers targeting “random actors involved in any real estate transaction – lawyers, brokers, title agencies, mortgage lenders”. Once inside a corporate email system, thieves can “monitor correspondence regarding a specific transaction for months.” When it’s time, for example, for a buyer to wire a deposit, the thief will send “a fraudulent email to the buyer, claiming to give official instructions from the realtor or title.” Danny Gonzales, a homebuyer in Texas, mistakenly transferred $123,500 to thieves who accessed his title agent’s system. The thieves’ email, which was from a Gmail account, “looked identical to his except for an ‘e’ which was replaced with a ‘c'”.

The Burnout Relief Industry

“Quietly quitting” has already spawned a cottage industry of workplace consultants who are committed to “igniting employee enthusiasm,” Callum Borchers said in The Wall Street Journal. “If you’re running a business now, chances are your inbox is full of messages from experts claiming they can kill morale, foster connection, and (and) boost membership.” Sure, gurus have always showcased their techniques for solving burnout, but the viral “silent quit” meme – referring to workers only doing what’s in their job description – seems to have “reinforced feelings of emergency”. One startup, Rising Team, even closed a second round of venture capital for “fellowship-building software.”

Jail for breaking safety rules

Top security officials fear jail time for security breaches, Jacob Carpenter said in Fortune. Last week, federal jurors found former Uber chief security officer Joe Sullivan guilty of “two felonies related to covering up a massive customer data hack from federal regulators.” It’s “believed to be the first time prosecutors have charged a technology security officer” with nondisclosure of a corporate breach. Sullivan handled the incident using “a fairly standard security practice” – paying hackers through the company’s “bug bounty” program to keep him quiet. But later he “intentionally hid the hack” from investigators and lied about Uber’s security protocols. Fears of “frenzied pursuit” are therefore “a bit exaggerated”.

This article first appeared in the latest issue of The week magazine. If you want to know more, you can try six risk-free issues of the magazine here.

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