If you receive the following e-mail it is a scam:
Subject line: Professional Liability Renewal April – May 2013:
I would like to review and Possibly lower your Professional Liability Insurance Premiums. I developed a relationship with a firm ( A rated companies and better ) that have saved 20-30% and thousands of dollars for some friends. To review yours, all we need is your last years application and declaration page. (fax 214.853.5846) If interested, email my assistant Ms Mindy Harris at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 972-386-6639.Mark S. Pincus JP Morgan International Plaza III 14241 Dallas Parkway, Suite 650 Dallas, Texas 75254 email@example.com www.universalfg.com
This e-mail is a phishing scam
An independent Google search of “Universalfg” returns no pertinent results.
Following the link listed in the signature line takes the user to www.universalfg.com, a poorly written site with grammar and punctuation errors.
While the phone numbers on the site match those listed in the spoof e-mail, there is no physical address included on the site. No legitimate insurer would fail to include a physical address on its Web site.
The About Us page lists Mindy Harris as a partner – not an assistant – contradicting the e-mail.
- The About Us page contains an outdated photograph caption from 2011.
- The About Us page lists two employees – a managing partner (the purported sender of this e-mail) and Mindy Harris, identified as a “partner.” There are no other employees, which seems odd for the scope of services provided by this “business.”
- The last blog post on the site is dated July 2011.
- The Address Bar icon that appears in the URL of the blog is a black and white glamour shot of a woman. This is inappropriate imagery for a professional insurer.
The Professional Liability Fund is the sole provider of primary
malpractice coverage for Oregon lawyers
There are no private insurers from whom you can purchase the statutorily required coverage in Oregon.
- Coverage rates are proposed by the Professional Liability Fund Board of Directors and approved by the Oregon State Bar Board of Governors.
Oregon lawyers do not complete an “application form” for primary plan coverage. [Granted, there is a form for Excess Coverage.]
- “Renewals” of Professional Liability Fund coverage occur annually at year-end, not in “April-May.” Some lawyers elect to pay their assessment on a quarterly basis. E-mail notices are usually sent to bar members in November for the coming year. Additional e-notices follow. Payment is made through the secure member login on the Oregon State Bar Web site.
If you have questions regarding your Professional Liability Fund payment, please contact the PLF Accounting Department at 1-800-452-1639.
If you have been a victim of an Internet scam or have received an e-mail that you believe was an attempted scam, please file a complaint with one of the following:
Consider attending our CLE: Protecting Your Firm and Your Clients from Scams, Fraud, and Financial Loss – May 16, 2013.