First American Cyber Attack Disrupts Closings: No New Updates from the American Title Insurance Firm

Written by Andrew Doyle

December 28, 2023

First American Cyber Attack Disrupts Closings: No New Updates from the American Title Insurance Firm

The nation’s second-largest title insurer, and its subsidiaries are currently experiencing an ongoing system outage following the First American cyber attack on December 20th.

This outage has caused ACI software outages for appraisers and significant disruptions to real estate transactions across the country. This incident has affected homebuyers and sellers in over 2,000 locations who rely on First American’s title services.

First American Cyber Attack Disrupts Closings: No New Updates from the American Title Insurance Firm

First American promptly informed the public about the cybersecurity incident and has taken its email system offline as a precautionary measure. Clients are advised to be cautious of emails from

First American Title Cyber Attack Updates Are Still Long Awaited

The company is actively working on restoring its systems, but cannot provide an estimate of the duration or impact of the disruption at this time.

First American cyber attack updates are being shared through a dedicated website created by the company. However, at the time of writing this, no new updates or filings have been published since last Friday.

Homebuyers, sellers, and appraisers have been expressing their concerns and seeking clarification on the incident through comments on the company’s LinkedIn announcement.

For example, one buyer mentioned that they had wired full payment for a home that was supposed to close last week, but now their funds are inaccessible and they are at risk of missing their closing date. Another comment came from a home seller who has been waiting for disbursement for six days.

Under the First American Financial umbrella, there are various subsidiaries including First American Title Insurance, First American Title Guaranty, and nearly twenty other subsidiaries. As of Wednesday morning, the websites for DataTrace and ACI, a valuation technology subsidiary, were still inaccessible.

ACI Appraisal Software Outages Continue to Slow Down Industry

The ongoing concern with ACI software outages have been causing delays and complications for appraisers in the industry.

ACI software is a crucial tool for generating appraisal XML files and uploading them to AMCs and lenders.

As a result of the ACI software outage, appraisers have been unable to complete their appraisal reports, leading to delays and issues with various files.

On a positive note, ServiceMac, the mortgage servicer subsidiary of First American, has managed to restore its services and is now operational again.

First American Cyber attack is Not the First Incident to Hit the Title Insurance Firm

The recent cybersecurity attack at First American is separate from the previous incident in May 2019, for which the company was required to pay a settlement of $1 million to the New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) for violating cybersecurity regulations.

It is worth noting that First American Title Insurance is not the only title firm to experience a cybersecurity attack in recent months.

In late November, Fidelity National Financial also fell victim to a ransomware attack, resulting in a temporary shutdown of its systems. The ransomware gang AlphV/BlackCat claimed responsibility for the attack.

Additionally Loancare, a mortgage subservicer and subsidiary of Fidelity National Financial, reported that the data of approximately 1.3 million customers was compromised as a result of the November cybersecurity incident.

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