With many businesses asking their teams to work remotely, security experts are warning of spikes in cyber-crime attempts.
The global COVID-19 pandemic has sparked a surge of phishing attempts on unsuspecting individuals. One such attack used the logo of the CDC Health Alert Network claiming to provide a list of local active infections, before stealing confidential information from the unprepared victims.
Cyber criminals are looking to take advantage of this period of global uncertainty, reinforcing the urgent need for everyone to be extra vigilant when it comes to cybercrime.
We have received a great deal of emails from our members offering guidance and support to other members. Key questions and answers below:
Read This Before You Transfer Any Money
People involved in property transfers are a target for cyber fraud scams. You must take precautions when transferring money.
You cannot trust bank account information that is provided over the phone, by email or sent by SMS to your mobile phone.
As part of our commitment to supporting conveyancers we hold regular Best Practice Groups (BPG) in various locations. All full members are welcome to attend BPGs. If you are interesting in attending, please contact Dani on email@example.com for further details or contact the facilitator directly.
Face-to-face: How artificial intelligence (AI) could signal a revival of in-person identity verification services
It was a defining moment of 2019: a doctored video clip of a decade-old celebrity interview was posted online to both showcase a new technology and warn us of its consequences. Taken from an episode of David Letterman’s late-night talk show in 2008, the video features comedian Bill Hader recounting his time on a movie set with Tom Cruise.
But there’s a twist. The viral video’s creator applied AI processing to the video – a technique commonly known as ‘deepfake’ technology – to transplant Cruise’s face onto Hader’s every time he did an impression of the action movie star.
Licensed Conveyancers are subject to Compliance Examinations as subscribers to an ELNO.
In Customer Information Bulletin No 191, Land Use Victoria outlined the process as follows:
“In a compliance examination a Subscriber is asked to provide documents and information evidencing that instruments digitally signed and lodged using an ELN comply with the Participation Rules. A Compliance Examination Notice to a Subscriber specifies the documents and information relating to Registry Instruments lodged by that Subscriber listed in the notice and includes:
- Copies of the Client Authorisation for the Conveyancing Transaction and any evidence supporting the Client Authorisation
- Written details of the steps taken to verify the identity of the Client and/or the mortgagor and any evidence supporting that verification of identity
- Written details of the steps taken to verify that the Client and/or the mortgagor is a legal person and has the right to enter into the Registry Instrument or other Document (Right to Deal)
- Copies of all supporting evidence for the Registry Instrument or other Document
One of our members has recently been subject to a compliance examination and has outlined her experience.
She was required to provide the following information for the audited files:
- signed client authorisation form
- identification documents including a photo taken at the face to face interview
- date and time of the verification
- notes made at the face to face meeting relating to the verification
- any other relevant information collected at the face to face meeting relating to the verification
ARNECC has produced guidance notes on Client Authorisation, Verification of Identity and Compliance Examinations (among other topics) and they can be found here.
You should note that:
- VOI is meant to be a face-to-face process.
- A subscriber MUST identify each Client for whom it has authority to act. This includes verification of friends and family.
- Client authorisation is meant to take place at the time of undertaking the VOI of your client.
- If Client authorisation and VOI are not undertaken at the same time then you will need to provide written details including timing and supporting evidence of the steps taken to ensure the Client Authorisation form was signed by the client who had been identified.
- The client authorisation must include the capacity of the representative.
The Australian Registrars’ National Electronic Conveyancing Council (ARNECC) publishes a Model Participation Rules guidance note that contains a checklist of what is covered in a compliance examination: MPR Guidance Note #6 – Compliance Examinations (available at www.arnecc.gov.au/publications>Model Participation Rules Guidance Notes).
A Common Errors Report has also recently been published by ARNECC which covers the most common errors all jurisdictions are encountering and provides an explanation of ARNECC’s expectations in relation to compliance of Subscribers.
AIC Vic has developed a Risk Management program around the types of claims that arise in the professional indemnity area. The aim of this program is to reduce the claims on the PI policy. This benefits all conveyancers.
This program consists of seminars, webinars and videos with points allocated to each event.
The PII underwriter has agreed to provide a 10% discount on their premium to Licensed Conveyancers who complete 10 points of risk management in the 12 months preceding their insurance renewal date.
It is open to all Licensed Conveyancers.
It has always been important to know who your client is. Now, with the mandating of econveyancing, it is critical that practitioners take care to identify their clients and to ensure that their clients have the right to deal with the property.