Hackers Target Australia's Soon-To-Be Mandatory Online System
Conveyancing site account hacked, money stolen.
A young couple has been left homeless after a hacker stole a quarter of a million dollars from an online transaction system.
Dani Venn, a contestant on season three of Masterchef, and husband Chris Burgess are the latest victim of scammers targeting PEXA, an online system used by thousands of Australian conveyancers.
The thief stole the money by hacking into their conveyancers’ email and resetting the user's PEXA password.
Money was then transferred into a Commonwealth Bank account opened by the scammer.
Venn and Burgess lost money from the sale of their home in Melbourne’s north-east. It was supposed to go towards another property, which they were settling on this week.
The couple is still waiting to hear if their conveyancer’s insurance will cover the theft.
The Commonwealth Bank has already frozen $143,000, but the rest of their money has already been withdrawn.
The couple have been given two weeks to come up with the money for their new house, otherwise will also have to forfeit their $80,000 deposit.
Until then they plan to live in a caravan at a relative's property.
Ten Eyewitness News understands at least two other PEXA transactions have been targeted by scammers.
PEXA was set up by four state governments and the four big banks.
It will be mandatory in Victoria and Western Australia later this year and in New South Wales by mid next year.
More than one million property transactions have been completed using the platform.
PEXA has been contacted for comment.