Fraud Risk Management

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Preventing claims

Lawyers as tools or dupes of fraudster clients

Bad cheque scam (fake certified cheques and other negotiable instruments)

In the bad cheque scam, fraudsters use various ruses in an attempt to trick lawyers into paying funds out of their trust accounts. To learn more, see:

Fraudulent investment schemes

Potential fraudulent investment scheme operating in BC (Notice to the Profession, August 1, 2012)
Don’t be taken advantage of by dishonest clients – ethical guidelines and rules (Practice Watch, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2011 No. 2 Summer)
Fraudulent investments (Practice Watch, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2009 No. 4 Winter)
Fighting back against fraud — a dark and shifting landscape (Practice Tips, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2005 No. 5 November-December)
Scamsters target lawyers (Notice to the Profession, July 8, 2005)
Rules require lawyers to guard against fraud (Benchers' Bulletin, 2005 No. 2 April-May)
New rules require lawyers to guard against scamsters (Notice to the Profession, March 11, 2005)
When scamsters target lawyers (Benchers' Bulletin, 2003 No. 3 May-June)
Watching out for questionable schemes and scams (Alert! bulletin 1999: June)
Investment Scams: How to Protect Your Money (This online resource, developed jointly by the BC Securities Commission and Alberta Securities Commission, focuses on the more common methods fraudsters use to approach potential victims – via the Internet, advertisements, seminars, and by exploiting an affinity or common bond.)

Real estate: value and identity frauds

Identity fraud – Alberta loan on Alberta land (Practice Watch, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2012  No. 4 Winter)
Forgery risks in mortgage transactions (Notice to the Profession, March 23, 2011)
The "Oklahoma flip" – a cautionary tale of property value fraud (Practice Watch, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2010 No. 2 Summer)
Real estate fraud alert (Notice to the Profession, June 2, 2010)
Scams, scams and more scams (Practice Watch, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2008 No. 4 October)
Identity fraud alert (Notice to the Profession, June 10, 2008)
Real estate fraud — a prevention primer (Insurance Issues: Risk Management, October 2005)
Law Society alert on value fraud schemes (Notice to the Profession, August 10, 2005)
Fighting back against fraud — the risks in real estate (Practice Tips, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2005 No. 2 April-May) 

Employee fraud

Forgery risks in mortgage transactions (Notice to the Profession, March 23, 2011)
Do your systems protect you from employee fraud? (Practice Watch, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2010 No. 3 Fall) 

Other scams and risks

Email containing Trojan virus eludes standard security software (Notice to the Profession, August 6, 2015)
Fraudsters are targeting lawyers disbursing trust funds with a change in payment instructions (Notice to the Profession, May 7, 2015); Help thwart scams – follow the client ID rules and beware of changes to payment instructions (Practice Watch, Benchers' Bulletin, 2015: No. 2 Summer)
New email "phishing" scam targets firm accounting staff and lawyers (Notice to the Profession, April 8, 2015)
Dealing with Cryptowall ransomware (Practice Tips, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2015: No. 1 Spring); Cryptolocker ransomware alert (Practice Resource, December 2013)
BC law firm's computer system hacked by extortionist (Notice to the Profession, December 31, 2014)
Incorporating a company for a new client outside of BC? Beware of a new scam (Practice Watch, Benchers' Bulletin, 2014 No. 4 Winter)
Making your e-communications secure (Practice Tips, Benchers' Bulletin, 2014 No. 3 Fall)
Security practice tips – tips to improve the security of law firm IT systems (Practice Tips, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2014: No. 2 Summer)
Request to replace a trust cheque - eDeposit scam (E-Brief, July 2014)
Beware of fraudster wanting to upgrade your point of sale terminal (E-Brief, May 2014)
Fraudsters may impersonate you – search your name on-line (Practice Watch, Benchers' Bulletin, 2013 No. 4 Winter)
Ontario law firm victim of large fraud due to infection by Trojan banker virus (Notice to the Profession, December 21, 2012)
The Little Black Book of Scams, fake websites and lawyers (Practice Watch, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2012 No. 2 Summer)
Fraudster pretending he’s been hired to create a law firm’s website (Practice Watch, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2012 No. 2 Summer)
Tech security for lawyers – deals with a variety of security issues relating to technology, including malware (Practice Tips, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2012: No. 1 Spring)
Have you received an electronic trust deposit "by mistake"? (Practice Watch, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2010 No. 3 Fall)
Getting rid of your photocopier? A potential gold mine for fraudsters (Practice Watch, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2010 No. 2 Summer)
New lottery scam (Practice Watch, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2009 No. 1 Spring)
Scams to look out for (Practice Tips, Benchers’ Bulletin, 2007 No. 2 May)