Fla. (July 10, 2017) – Polk County Clerk of Courts and
Comptroller Stacy Butterfield urges residents to protect their property records
and avoid scams before they happen with Property Alert Service.
With a new scam seeming to
appear each week, residents can never be overly cautious when it comes to
protecting their identity. Identity theft is an issue that continues to plague
millions of Americans every year. Among those impacted are victims of property
fraud, a form of identity theft, which occurs when fake records are filed to
steal people’s property.
Property Alert is a free
online service offered by the Clerk of Courts, which emails registered users any time an official record—such as
a deed, mortgage, or lien—is recorded with their name or parcel ID number.
Residents can register their
own name as well as business and family members’ names. While this service
cannot prevent fraud, it helps alert users to fraudulent filing at an early stage
and provides valuable time to track down and stop criminals.
“In this day and age, fraud
seems to be unavoidable—whether it is a skimmer at a gas pump, or a crook
filing a fake record to steal someone else’s property. All property owners
should be wary of property fraud, and monitoring your records is crucial to protecting
yourself,” said Clerk Butterfield, “I urge all residents to take advantage of
this free service. The registration process is simple and will help alert you
to potential fraud if fraudulent activity occurs.”
If a customer has reason to
suspect that a record was recorded fraudulently, they can contact law
enforcement to investigate the matter, and/or seek advice from an attorney.
Sign up for the service by
All Clerk services such as
traffic ticket payments and access to court records through Polk Records Online
are available online 24/7. Contact the Polk County Clerk of Courts office at
863-534-4000 or visit the Clerk’s office online at the web address above. Like
County Clerk Facebook
page for updates, announcements, and scam alerts.