Protect yourself by reviewing timely information on the latest scams.
If you receive a call from someone pretending to be from a computer company regarding a problem with your computer or a refund for a previous service rendered this could be fraud. We have received information that fraudsters are pretending to be from a computer company and requesting remote access to your computer or wanting financial information to perform a refund.
- NEVER provide your financial information to anyone over the phone you don’t know or trust
- NEVER type/enter your financial information when someone has remote access to your computer
- If you’re a victim of this fraud we encourage you to contact your local law enforcement authorities
Are You Looking for Rental Property or Do You Have Property to Rent? Read this First!
What is the rental scam?
Sophisticated scammers use the Internet, and particularly free classified websites, to prey on unsuspecting real estate victims. Rental property scams generally happen in one of two ways:
- Consumers are looking for a house or apartment to rent and get scammed by an “owner.” Victims come across a place in a great area, at a great price. The advertisement looks legitimate so they start communicating with the “owner,” generally by email. The owner says the place is theirs if they wire money to cover an application fee, security deposit, etc. They wire the money, and then never hear from the “owner” again.
- Consumers are renting out a house or apartment they own and get scammed by a “renter.” “Renters” contact victims, generally by email, and express interest in renting the house or apartment. Scammers send a check for the deposit but then cancel the deal. Victims wire the money back only to find out that the check was a fake.
How to protect yourself
Fraudsters use sophisticated techniques and create very believable stories to lure you in. However, there usually are one or more red flags that can tip people off to a possible scam, such as a renter wanting to rent a property without seeing it, or extreme urgency to get a deal done.
Some tips to keep in mind:
- If the rental price sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Research average rental rates for similar properties in the area.
- If you’re communicating by email, check for common red flags like poor grammar, misspellings, character/spacing mistakes, and excessive capitalization.
- Most renters want to see the property before they commit; if they don’t, chances are you’re dealing with a scammer. Another red flag is if they’re in an unreasonable hurry to get you to rent your property to them very quickly.
- Be cautious when dealing with people who say they currently live overseas or are out of the country on business. Scammers tell victims this to explain why they can’t meet in person. And be wary if they prefer to communicate only via email.
- Don’t send money to anyone you don’t know and trust, especially people you’ve never met in-person.
If you sent a Western Union Money Transfer® and believe you may be a victim of fraud, call our Fraud Hotline number at (800) 448-1492.