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Conveyancing firm taken for R500K through e-mail hack
South Africa - Tech4Law
This is something that is happening more often in our local conveyancing circles. It seems law firms seem to think “it happens to others, but not us.” We I have news for you…there is no reason why your firm could not be the next victim, unless you take steps to prevent it.

I know everyone wants to know who the firm is, for some strange reason that is the way humans are wired, but I am not going to name or hint at the firm – the reason for this post is to help all conveyancers take steps that will curb this crafty hacking and force the hackers to start focusing on other areas, hopefully far away from South Africa and our property transfer systems.

Carte Blanche last year revealed that The Fidelity Fund had rejected 110 claims for cybercrime which totalled R85 million and that they no longer cover cases of cybercrime.

How do the hackers get the money?

Step one:
The hacker gains access to your webmail email, by using password hacking tools. Email names are not difficult to work out and password hacking tools will find a weak password surprisingly quickly. They then check through the email and find a matter that can be manipulated – I would imagine a large sum and somebody who seems comfortable with using email as the communication tool of choice.

'Zoom boom' highlights weakened office property sector
South Africa - PropertyWheel
The FNB Commercial Property Broker Survey surveys a sample of commercial property brokers in and around South Africa’s six major metros: the City of Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni (greater Johannesburg), Tshwane, eThekwini, City of Cape Town, and Nelson Mandela Bay.

FNB Commercial Property Finance has a strong focus on the ‘owner services’ market and a pre-requisite in selecting the broker respondents is that they deal in owner-serviced properties. A portion of these brokers also have dealings in the developer or investor markets as well as in the listed sector.

Respondents are asked to rate their perception of the buying and selling markets activity levels on a scale of ‘1’ to ‘10’ with ‘10’ being the strongest activity level rating.

The term ‘activity’ is as experienced by a property broker and it can include everything from indications of interest in buying or selling for example, inquiries or viewings related to potential buying or listing, through to actual transaction levels.

Land Bank lands first tranche of its injection
South Africa - Business Report
JOHANNESBURG - The Land Bank yesterday scored the first tranche of its government equity injection as it moved to assure investors that it was making progress on the restructuring of its mounting debt. The struggling agricultural development and agro-business lender received half of the R3billion it asked for to pay creditors.

The National Treasury confirmed the allocation to recapitalise the Land Bank. The bank sought an emergency liquidity bridge facility while its restructuring plans were being finalised.

“The National Treasury will transfer the R3bn equity injection to Land Bank as announced in the Adjustments budget, thus the Land Bank no longer needs the R3bn liquidity facility that was going to be new debt from a group of lenders,” the Treasury said.
Business Report

Recover for the future not the past
UK - Todays Conveyancer
Covid-19 has presented the world with the worst health crisis in over a century, prompting governments and business leaders to work closely, pool resources and limit the impact of the virus. Amidst the chaos, it has acted as an unexpected catalyst for several changes in some of the UK’s leading sectors.

The property sector has been a core focus, sustaining severe disruption and being forced to pivot quickly and adopt digital practices to prevent further damage. While accurate data was available pre-Covid and the growing capability of technology had already started to change how the property market operated, there was considerable room for improvement.
Todays Conveyancer

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