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Title fraud happens when someone poses as a homeowner to sell real estate they don’t own to an unsuspecting buyer – and while still rare, it’s on the rise in Canada. For victims, whether the buyer or the legitimate homeowner, the anguish of learning you’ve been defrauded almost always comes with a lengthy legal process to straighten things out. And without title insurance, the buyer may be out the cost of the house.

Salmaan Farooqui is the Globe’s personal finance reporter, and he’s explored why title fraud has gotten a boost thanks to the pandemic, despite all the paperwork and checks and balances built into the process of home-buying.

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