From a press release
The Delaware County Recorder of Deeds Office is now offering a free property fraud protection tool, called FraudSleuth®, that provides Delaware County property owners with automatic alerts to help safeguard against property fraud.
FraudSleuth® is a software-based monitoring tool that alerts property owners when any document—such as a mortgage, deed, or mortgage satisfaction—related to a specific parcel is recorded under that parcel’s ID. Similar to how credit monitoring services track consumer purchases and payments, FraudSleuth tracks properties and automatically alerts owners to possible fraudulent activity.
FraudSleuth® is currently used by many counties in Pennsylvania with local governments working to combat an uptick in property fraud and increased calls from residents for assistance.
“While it has been relatively rare in Delaware County, various other jurisdictions have experienced an increase in title theft and deed fraud over the past couple of years,” explained Robert A. Auclair, Esq., Recorder of Deeds. “So, as a proactive, protective measure, our office has made this free monitoring service available to all property owners in the county.”
To begin using FraudSleuth®, property owners need to visit the Recorder of Deeds Online Services website, accessible at delcopa.gov/deeds, and create a profile for the property they wish to monitor. Profiles are quick and easy to create, requiring a limited amount of information, including the property owner’s name, the parcel ID number, and an email address (where the owner wishes to have their alerts sent). If a property owner wants to monitor multiple properties, then multiple profiles will need to be created; one for each property.
To create a new profile from the Recorder of Deeds Online Services website:
- Create a New User Account
- Click “Preferences”
- Click “Configure FraudSleuth Profile”
- Click “Add Profile”
- Input the Profile details (including your name and the parcel ID)
- Click “Save” to complete the process.
When a document is recorded against the information on file with the Delaware County Recorder of Deeds office, the email generated by FraudSleuth will include matched data, including the document type, the document reference number, and the recording date/time of the matching document. The document can then be viewed on the Recorder of Deeds Online Services website.
Residents should be aware that an alert does not mean that fraudulent activity has occurred. Legitimate transactions involving the property owner, bank, and other entities will also trigger an alert, and it is the property owner’s responsibility to monitor the alerts and take action if the activity is suspicious.
If the property owner receives an alert regarding activity that appears fraudulent or suspicious or inaccurate, property owners can contact the Delaware County Recorder of Deeds office at (610) 891-4152 or contact the Delaware County Criminal Investigation Unit (CID) at (610) 891-4161.