Emails falsely claiming to be from JMW Solicitors LLP
17 February 2017
Emails have been sent to law firms, falsely claiming to be from "Paulina Turonek" of JMW Solicitors LLP, in relation to a memorandum of sale.
What is the scam?
The SRA has been informed that law firms have received emails from "Paulina Turonek", falsely claiming to be an employee at JMW Solicitors LLP. The content of the emails relate to a memorandum of sale and supposedly attaches contract documentation. A concern is that the attachments may contain malware.
The emails seen by the SRA appear to have been sent from "JMW Solicitors", but have actually been sent from the email addresses "email@example.com" and "firstname.lastname@example.org".
The emails may provide a footer with the genuine address and SRA number for the genuine firm (see below). The emails seen by the SRA also provide the telephone number 0161 828 8064 and the fax number 0161 828 5875.
The SRA does not authorise or regulate any individual called "Paulina Turonek". Therefore any business or transactions through "Paulina Turonek" or the contact details listed above, are not undertaken by a solicitor's practice or an individual authorised or regulated by the SRA.
Is there a genuine firm or person?
JMW Solicitors LLP is a genuine firm which is authorised and regulated by the SRA. The address for the genuine JMW Solicitors LLP is 1 Byrom Place, Spinningfields, Manchester, M3 3HG. The telephone number is 0345 872 6666 or 0345 402 0001, fax number is 0161 828 1827 and their genuine SRA number is 508380.
The genuine firm has confirmed that it does not employ anyone called "Paulina Turonek" and it has no connection to the emails referred to above.
The genuine firm has confirmed that it's genuine email addresses end with "@jmw.co.uk" and no genuine email correspondence from the firm is sent from any generic "gmail" style email accounts.
What should I do?
When a firm's or individual's identity has been copied exactly (or cloned), due diligence is necessary. If you receive correspondence claiming to be from the above firm(s) or individual(s), or information of a similar nature to that described, you should conduct your own due diligence by checking the authenticity of the correspondence by contacting the law firm directly by reliable and established means. You can contact the SRA to find out if individuals or firms are regulated and authorised by the SRA and verify an individual's or firm's practising details. Other verification methods, such as checking public records (e.g. telephone directories and company records) may be required in other circumstances.
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