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Homeowners and buyers panic after Fidelity National Financial ransomware catastrophe

Fidelity National Financial, the “leading provider of title insurance and escrow services and North America’s largest title insurance company,” announced a cyberattack on Tuesday.

Since then, homeowners with mortgages and prospective buyers buying properties from FNF or one of its many subsidiaries have been confused and worried about what to do.

“I feel mistreated. I don’t know where my money is,” said a woman who told me she sold an Illinois house for $397,000 through FNF-owned IPX 1031.

The anonymous woman said she has been trying to call IPX 1031 but hasn’t reached anyone.

I called the IPX 1031 employee the woman had been calling, but a voicemail said, “Fidelity National Financial is still experiencing a system-wide outage.” We cannot send or receive email or access any system. We appreciate your patience.”

FNF hasn’t answered emails since last week.

An automated message stating that she was busy answered a Monday call to FNF’s corporate office receptionist. On Wednesday, calls to the same number elicited the same automated message.

FNF’s website was down when published.
So far, FNF has said little about the incident. After the breach, FNF told the SEC: “We blocked access to certain of our systems, which resulted in business disruptions. These measures have affected our title insurance, escrow, mortgage transaction, and technology services to the real estate and mortgage industries.

Christine Youmans, who pays her mortgage with LoanCare, is unsure what to do. FNF-owned LoanCare provides “full-service subservicing to the mortgage industry,” according to its website.

“Everything is shut down; no one can pay the mortgage, and you can’t get them on the phone,” Youmans told

We hope you and your family are safe, said an automated message that came back from a LoanCare website number. We’ll help your family get back on track.”

The ransomware gang ALPHV (or BlackCat) claimed responsibility for the FNF cyberattack on its dark web site shortly after.

 

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