Fraud up 20% in one year, SearchFlow comments on Experian’s latest Fraud index

Fraud up 20% in one year, SearchFlow comments on Experian’s latest Fraud index

The latest Fraud Index released by Experian has revealed that the fraud rate increased by 20% in the year from Q1 2015, until Q1 2016.

The research has also revealed an increase in ID theft relating to mortgage applications. Historically, ID fraud accounted for around 4% of all mortgage application fraud, however this figure has risen to 6% for 2016 which is the highest it has been since 2012.

Identity theft continues to remain the most prevalent form of fraud across the board, with 56% of all fraudulent activities attributed to third party fraud. Experian has also noted an increase in “impersonations of the deceased within mortgage fraud”, with these fraudsters using the identity of deceased individuals who had recently resided at the property.

Experian also noted that in many cases, fraudsters have either hacked databases or intercepted emails between individuals and their solicitors.  Large payments have been diverted and fraudsters have disappeared with the money.

Greg Bryce, Managing Director of SearchFlow, property intelligence specialists, comments: “Experian’s latest Fraud Index brings our attention again to the extent of this problem for the conveyancing sector. Recognising the problem, and as part of our commitment to offering value added service, we have recently partnered with Decision First to offer an unrivalled free service to protect conveyancers and homebuyers from the risk of fraud. Using Decision First’s Law Firm Search via the Lender Exchange, conveyancers can now ensure it is safe to transfer their client’s money by checking and confirming the client account of the vendor’s solicitor on every single transaction at no additional cost.

“In addition, with regards to checking the identity of a seller, the most effective and safest way to ensure all the checks are carried out is by carrying out electronic AML checks. We have partnered with GB Group, the global leaders in identity data intelligence solutions, to offer a fully integrated and detailed AML report which gives extensive and instant results. GB Group utilises the most comprehensive suite of data sets that are updated daily and sourced from over 240 countries. Electronic AML checks can be purchased as a low cost report and offer vital protection, reassurance and time savings.”

Working on behalf of lenders to verify the details of law firms on their panels, Lender Exchange offers access to the largest set of verified conveyancing firms in England and Wales, equating to over 95% of the market. Lender Exchange’s Law Firm Search offers the most comprehensive check on solicitor’s details in the market and will provide much needed protection against this area of risk.

This article was submitted to be published by SearchFlow as part of their advertising agreement with Today’s Conveyancer. The views expressed in this article are those of the submitter and not those of Today’s Conveyancer. 



SearchFlow is the UK’s largest provider of legal due diligence data for residential and commercial property transactions. Since its formation, it has supported over 5,000,000 instructions and delivered 26,000,000 searches; this equates to around 1 in every 4 property transactions in the UK.

SearchFlow recognises that proactively supporting each client’s journey is vital to delivering the right due diligence insights, searches, data, surveys and insurance for every transaction – whether a single residential property or a complex commercial portfolio. Via its advanced online ordering platform and backed-up by an award-winning customer service team, SearchFlow supports clients in delivering the conveyancing solutions needed to manage due diligence risk and achieve compliance.

By partnering with SearchFlow, property law professionals in the UK can deliver smarter, safer, and faster property transactions to their customers.

Based in Kent, SearchFlow is a Landmark Information Group business, which is part of DMGT plc.

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