How Cohen Closing & Title Responded to Growing Risk of Wire Fraud

CertifID shares highlights from a conversation with a closing company exploring their challenges with wire fraud and how CertifID brought them peace of mind.

How Cohen Closing & Title Responded to Growing Risk of Wire Fraud

CertifID shares highlights from a conversation with a closing company exploring their challenges with wire fraud and how CertifID brought them peace of mind.

How Cohen Closing & Title Responded to Growing Risk of Wire Fraud
Written by:

Katie Stewart

Read time:

5 minutes


Wire Fraud


Feb 22, 2023

Like many small businesses, Kelly Cohen and her team from Cohen Closing & Title are focused on building lasting relationships with their clients. They operate throughout New England and are known for their focus on trust and quality customer service.

Several years ago, they faced a growing threat of wire fraud impacting that customer service and trust. As the growing sophistication of this threat became a serious risk to their operations and clients, they knew something had to change.

We recently sat down with Kelly Cohen to learn more about her journey. 

Wire Fraud: From an Inconvenience to a Serious Challenge

Like many title and settlement companies, the Cohen Closing & Title team used to easily catch the obvious, poorly executed wire fraud attempts that would come their way. At that time, the emails were full of misspellings, incorrect grammar, or unusual wording or sentence structures. 

“There were these hackers and fraudsters that were sending these fake emails, and we were spotting them,” Cohen shared. “And we would catch them and feel empowered by that.”

Beginning around 2015, Cohen’s team noticed a change. “The emails got incredibly sophisticated … you had to really dig to see that these messages weren’t really coming from this actual person,” said Cohen. “They had ways, tools, and resources to communicate back and forth with emails that were looking way more real than we had anticipated.”

The fraud attempts were becoming more sophisticated, and the Cohen team began to realize that these emails were a real threat. “This was something that could take us down and people could lose their life savings,” reflected Cohen. “We had a responsibility to do everything we could to prevent that from happening.”

The Need for a New Approach

Just as the complexity of wire fraud attempts increased, Cohen recognized that the tools and training she provided for her team were no longer enough to spot and prevent fraud.

And to Cohen, the stakes were very real. “I knew that one incident of fraud could wipe me out … wipe my company out.” Cohen’s team knew this risk too. “We had to walk in to work every day knowing that we were being targeted.”

That led Cohen to begin researching how her team could better protect themselves and their clients. Cohen Closing & Title’s first step was reaching out to underwriters to see what tools and advice they could share. That’s when Cohen first heard of CertifID and learned that CertifID’s platform could introduce the level of security her team needed for each phase of the wire transfer process.

After successfully integrating CertifID into its workflows, Cohen Closing & Title introduced CertifID’s PayoffProtect, which streamlines and further protects the lender payoff process during closing.

“From an efficiency standpoint, my team was so excited to learn that there was a software program that would help them send off these payoffs quicker and much more efficiently,” continued Cohen. “And with the peace of mind that there was insurance protecting these funds, my team rallied around it. They were so excited to be working with CertifID.”

Finding Peace of Mind with CertifID

“The thing that I love most about CertifiD is that I can sleep better at night,” said Cohen. Although the wire fraud threat has not gone away, Cohen and her team can feel more secure, and their clients can trust that their transactions are protected.

“The best part of working with CertifID is that I don’t have that pressure anymore,” continues Cohen. “I know that we are protecting those funds and working with CertifID to provide an insurance policy every time someone wires us money or we wire money.”

For other settlement and title companies looking to overcome the same challenge, Cohen recommends being proactive about finding a solution. “There shouldn’t be shame or embarrassment,” she said, referring to recognizing fraud and doing something about it. “That’s not going to solve the problem.”

Unfortunately, as Cohen notes, if you don’t take the necessary steps and believe that wire fraud can happen to you, it can. Acknowledging the problem and taking action can help the whole industry address fraud.

Learn More About CertifID

Whether you’re just starting your evaluation of options or need something more comprehensive, Cohen has one piece of advice: “My biggest recommendation is to have a conversation with CertifID.”

By setting up a meeting with the CertifID team for a customized demo, you can learn more about how to protect the funds you’re entrusted with. 

As Cohen reminds us: “We all work too hard to have a threat like this take down our businesses and livelihoods.”

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Katie Stewart

VP of Customer Success

Katie's background combines both IT and education. Her degree is in Management Information Systems, and she spent her first four years in the workforce as an IT business analyst. Katie took a career turn and joined Teach for America and worked in inner-city schools in Indianapolis as a math teacher and eventually an assistant principal. Today she combines her IT nerdiness and love of teaching, helping customers find success every day.

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