Mortgage Fraud Shows Steady Climb From ’96 to Present

The number of suspicious activity reports (SARs) relating to mortgage activity has risen steadily since 1996, making it the only area of potential fraud tracked to do so. 

Followed and enforced by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), mortgage loan fraud is on the rise, and has shown a sharp uptick in the last two years, according to a FinCEN report published this week. 

“Quite markedly, Mortgage Loan Fraud is the only summary characterization that has experienced an increase every year since 1996, with the past two years (2010 and 2011) accounting for nearly 37% of all noted instances of this specific activity for the last decade,” the report states. 

However, FinCEN notes that SARs can be filed well beyond the activity period during which the fraudulent activity may have taken place. The organization says repurchase demands have largely led to the increase. 

“This upward spike in mortgage fraud counts is in predominant part attributable to mortgage repurchase demands and special filings generated by several institutions,” FinCEN states. 

View the report

Written by Elizabeth Ecker

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