CAFC Bulletin: Vacation Rentals

Financial Crime Trend Bulletin: Vacation Rentals
FCNB on 07/08/2019 12:02 PM
CAFC Bulletin: Vacation Rentals

 
Fraudsters create classified ads for vacation property rentals in popular tourist destinations. The ads are posted on trusted websites or the fraudsters mimic known vacation sites.
Interested consumers will receive prompt responses from the fraudsters. Their desired travel dates are always available.
To secure the booking, fraudsters will ask that a payment is made quickly. They may ask for a wire transfer or for money sent through a money service business. Fraudsters may also recommend a fake secure payment processor. This payment processor is only available outside of the trusted website. Finally, fraudsters may also offer a discount if the reservation is paid in full.

In the end, there is no new reservation linked to the consumer’s account with the trusted website. Consumers will lose the ability to contact the fraudsters. In the worst cases, consumers will not realize they are victims until they arrive and there is no rental.

Warning Signs – How to Protect Yourself
 
  • Do not send money to strangers.
  • When entering into a rental agreement through a trusted service provider, you must use their payment provider to be eligible for their refund/cancellation policies.
  • Contact Equifax and Transunion if you have provided sensitive information on applications.
  • Trust your instincts. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.


If you think you or someone you know has been a victim of fraud, please contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at1-888-495-8501 or report online at www.antifraudcentre.ca.


This document is the property of the CAFC. It is loaned to your agency/department in confidence and it is not to be reclassified, copied, reproduced, used or further disseminated, in whole or part, without the consent of the originator. It is not to be used in affidavits, court proceedings or subpoenas or for any other legal or judicial purposes. This caveat is an integral part of this document and must accompany any information extracted from it.

Source:Financial & Consumer Commission

Real Estate Rental Scam on Kijiji.com

scamFRAUDalert see it appropriate to issue this ALERT as the
Financial and Consumer Services Commission is reporting that scammers are targeting rentals on Kijiji.Kijilli - Rentals.png

 

FRAUD ALERT – Real Estate Rental Scam

Fraudsters are advertising properties for rent on Kijiji using information and photos from legitimate real estate listings. It is suspected that the scam artist is hoping to get money from victims by collecting fraudulent damage deposits.

 Victims reported responding to Kijiji ads for apartments or rooms for rent in New Brunswick. Victims were asked to pay hundreds of dollars in cash to cover the first month’s rent and damage deposits, before discovering the rental properties were not the property of the scam artist.

At FCNB we share information on the red flags of fraud and information about current scams circulating in the province in an effort to help New Brunswickers protect themselves and their communities. While scams change and adapt, the red flags of fraud tend to be common across different types of scams. The more people can recognize the red flags, think critically about offers and be vigilant, the fewer people will end up being scammed.

Here are some of the red flags:

  • Spelling errors and typos in the ads
  • Pressure to act quickly
  • Asking the potential renter to ignore the for sale signs on the property
  • No ability for the potential renter to see the property in person before providing a deposit


New Brunswickers are encouraged to use these best practices before paying money to secure a rental property: 

  • Be aware of the red flags of fraud.
  • Never send money to someone you’ve never met, or only met online.
  • Before signing a rental agreement and paying a damage deposit, insist on seeing the property in person. If you are moving from out of province, ask someone you know locally to look at the property for you.
  • Do a reverse image search to determine if the images are shared on other websites.
  • If there is a for sale sign on the property, contact the listing REALTOR®to inquire if the owner is also seeking to rent to property.
  • If you are entering a rent to own situation, seek legal advice before signing a contract.
  • When purchasing or negotiating on sites such as Kijiji, it is always buyer beware. When using sites such as Realtor®, you are dealing with agents who are licensed. Learn more about how licensing can protect you, here.


If you suspect that you have been targeted in a rental fraud scam, contact the police.