WILMINGTON — Mortgage and property fraud is a growing white-collar crime, and the Clinton County recorder wants residents to know there’s a free alert service in place to advise local property owners when something is filed in the Recorder’s Office in their name.
“We are not seeing this in Clinton County as of now. But it seems to be closing in with the cities that are surrounding us,” Clinton County Recorder Tanya K. Day told Clinton County commissioners.
If you sign up for the Property Fraud Alert (PFA) service, you then will receive an alert when any document is filed with the Clinton County Recorder’s Office in your name.
If you receive an alert notification that you know or suspect arises from a fraudulent filing in your name, you can call the county recorder’s office (937-382-2067) or the PFA hotline (800-728-3858) for more information. You may be directed to obtain legal counsel if you determine potential fraudulent activity has occurred.
A person signing up for PFA is alerted within 24 hours when there is a document recorded with their name on it, said Day.
Often offenders commit property fraud on unoccupied properties, or the properties of deceased individuals, or properties of older people.
Day said people can register their properties and register the properties of aging relatives for alert notifications.
The alert arrives in the form of either an email or a phone text.
You can sign up free of charge by going to www.PropertyFraudAlert.com , selecting the appropriate county, and entering your information.
Clinton County Commissioners President Brenda K. Woods said she has signed up for PFA and it is “easy to do.”
But if someone is not comfortable with the process, they can call the Clinton County Recorder’s Office at 937-382-2067 and staff there will sign them up, Day said.
Reach Gary Huffenberger at 937-556-5768.