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In the coming weeks, St. Croix County Property owners may see a flyer with their tax bills to sign up for a free property fraud protection service. This free service is provided by the Register of Deeds office to monitor documents and receive notice of activity affecting property title.
“This service is easy to sign up for and offers a little extra peace of mind with just a few clicks of the computer mouse,” St. Croix County Register of Deeds, Beth Pabst said. “Participants can choose whether to receive their alerts via e-mail or over the phone.
A common property fraud scenario involves a criminal filing a bogus deed making it appear that the actual owner had transferred ownership of a parcel to someone else. The criminal then takes that deed to a bank, fraudulently obtains a mortgage and then disappears with a large amount of money.
While it can happen to anyone, perpetrators of property fraud often prey on the elderly, people in long term care facilities, absentee property owners and owners who spent large parts of the year out of town. While these crimes have yet to occur in St. Croix County, property fraud is a serious problem in some of our nearby states.
“The best protection we can offer against property fraud is proactive protection. This service is making St. Croix County less attractive to criminals and is in the best interest of the community,” Pabst said. Pabst hopes everyone takes advantage of this service to protect their investment.
If you do not receive a flyer you can sign up online at www.propertyfraudalert.com and using the drop-down arrow to select St. Croix, WI from the list. If you have more questions please contact the Register’s office 715-386-4650 or firstname.lastname@example.org-Croix.wi.us.
The free service and database are managed and maintained by Fidlar Technologies, the county’s software provider for land records.