It seems no matter where legal professionals turn these days, there always is a scam to be on the lookout for!
Below are two scams that have been reported to the Bar. If you have any questions about these scams, please contact email@example.com.
Alert: Phishing emails targeting lawyers
SC Bar members are cautioned to be aware of emails indicating that a complaint has been made against the lawyer or firm or that they contain a special message from the Bar president. Such emails are not coming from the Bar and are an attempt to phish members. Phishing emails are fraudulent emails that may contain links to phony websites or may request that you share personal or financial information by using a variety of techniques. Look for clues, including a suspicious “from” email address. The email may include directions to click on a link, which purports to be a copy of the complaint or of the “special message.” Do not click this link, as it could be an attempt to put ransomware on the affected computer. Bar members are reminded that any official grievance would come via U.S. mail from the Supreme Court and that any important Bar announcement would appear in E-Blast or would be sent by an individual Bar staff member.
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Check frauds and scams continue to target lawyer trust accounts
Remember the old saying, "If it seems too good to be true...." The Bar continues to receive reports of sophisticated check scams targeting lawyers. Scammers use real companies and real names to convince their victims. Some scams are particularly convincing, with phone calls from "clients" and even some reports of in-person visits from scammers. Even banks are sometimes fooled by the high level of check forgery and may misinform the lawyer of a check's authenticity. Sometimes the checks are authentic but stolen. Stay vigilant. If a large amount of money is involved with a client you do not know, wait before disbursing funds. There have been instances where the fraud is discovered by the bank up to a week later. Report all frauds to your malpractice carrier, local law enforcement and the Secret Service field office in your state.