Major ‘cybersecurity issue’ sparks outage and stops property transactions progressing in blow for buyers

Property buyer looks worried on phone

Property transactions could be prevented from progressing due to a major cybersecurity issue

Jessica Sheldon

By Jessica Sheldon

Published: 24/11/2023

- 16:20

Updated: 24/11/2023

- 17:15

A leading global cyber forensics firm is currently helping with an "urgent investigation" into the incident

A cyberattack affecting the property legal sector could lead to exchanges and completions being delayed.

The cybersecurity issue is understood to have led to an outage from a legal sector specialist infrastructure service provider, causing chaos in property chains across the UK.

Conveyancing firms are struggling to access the required systems to progress property transactions, due to the incident at the infrastructure service provider CTS, Property Industry Eye reports.

The firm, used by hundreds of conveyancers and law firms, confirmed this morning that it has been hit by a cyber incident.

Property buyer looks worried while on phone

A cyberattack is affecting the property legal sector


In a statement, CTS said: "We are experiencing a service outage which has impacted a portion of the services we deliver to some of our clients.

“The outage was caused by a cyber-incident.

"We are working closely with a leading global cyber forensics firm to help us with an urgent investigation into the incident and to assist us in service restoration.

“We continue to work around the clock with the assistance of third-party experts.

"Whilst we are confident that we will be able to restore services, we are unable to give a precise timeline for full restoration.

"We will continue to communicate directly with those of our clients which are impacted by the service outage, providing regular updates on the status of our work to restore services and our investigations into the incident.”

It's understood that up to 80 law firms are affected.

A delay to the exchange and completion process will be a blow to buyers and sellers.

The final stage in buying a property is known as completion.

Completion takes place after exchanging contracts, at which point the house legally becomes the buyer's and enables them to move in.

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