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 Rental Scam?

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ITGuy
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Joined: 10 Aug 2007
Posts: 2
Location: New Mexico


PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 8:47 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

The property management department of the company I work for has been receiving multiple emails similar to the following example which I will include below. The poor grammar alone makes me very suspicious of this email. Anyone have any input on this? Here's the example:

Quote:

Sent: Friday, August 10, 2007 5:30 AM
Subject: Apartment Needed !!!

Hello

I'm a young Model Artist which i came from Dallas texas But right now in africa for my Model Shooting,i wanna come back home for my Vacation and i need an partment or a room,am planning on stay there for sometime, i hope u wouldn't mind giving all information that concerns the house plus view of it on here, i am nice and friendly,i love to watch movies i have parties sometime so we could have some dinners sometime,mail me on my email add if u have an apartmnent for me,just get back to me with the price and pic of the house, aparment or rooms..because i really need it ontime ,u can also email me to my personal email address below: [email protected] or [email protected]

I hope to read from u soon,

THANKS........

Best Regards
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luckey
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Joined: 25 Jan 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 8:54 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Sounds like an overpayment or check mule scam. You will be sent a (bad) check for a deposit that will be for more than the requested amount, and you will be asked to send the money back via Moneygram or Western Union. Or the check will be for the right amount and "her" plans will change and you will be asked to wire the money back.

Either way, the check will eventually bounce, and your bank will hold you liable for the full amount.

You can find a lot of information about this type of scam at www.scamwarners.com

Kudos to you for checking it out, and for posting about it so others may learn about these kinds of scams.

Edits: fixed stuff and: I know it's hard to tell from an email, but is that a Texas accent she has? Wink

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Last edited by luckey on Fri Aug 10, 2007 9:06 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Rodus
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 8:55 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Looks like an overpayment scam to me. Scammer sends to large check and asks the receiver to refund the difference, receiver does, check bounces and you are out of pocket and the bank are not happy. Also worth noting that the check can sometimes take a long time to bounce.

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Lorenz
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 8:59 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

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SumYunGai
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Joined: 04 May 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 9:06 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

You're right. This is most likely a scam.

Here's how it works. Your prospective tenant will send you a check for the deposit on the apartment to hold it till she gets there. You cash it, balance shows up, you think you're good to go. Then very soon after she will contact you and say that she is no longer interested and needs her deposit money back for an emergency that's come up. She will ask that it be wired back because she needs it immediately. You send the money and she disappears, then in a few days you find out the check was a forgery and the funds have been removed from your account. "She's" just scamed you out of the amount of the security deposit and there's no way to recover it unless you have some sort of deadbeat insurance other than Larry and Guido.

There is a small possibility you have a serious renter. To safeguard against this scam, hold the check. DO NOT CASH THE CHECK until she's signed the lease papers and provided satisfactory proof of identity IN PERSON. If she tries to back out, destroy the check and tell her you never cashed it so the money never left her account. Or tell her that refunds on deposits are not given unless the tenant has signed and held to the terms of a lease. In either case, the check is almost certainly fake. DO NOT SEND MONEY no matter how much she begs, or threatens. "She" can't do a thing about it.

In the unlikely event she 's legit, signs papers and moves in, cash the check. If it comes back hot, you know where she lives.

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luckey
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 9:10 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

SumYunGai wrote:
then in a few days you find out the check was a forgery and the funds have been removed from your account.


Or even six months later. Where a lot of people really get in to trouble on these is they deposit the check and wait for a few weeks. They think the check has cleared, but it's only a matter of time before the bank catches up. Many people believe that if the bank clears the check, then it becomes the bank's responsibility if there is a problem later. If you read the fine print, you will find that is not the case.

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bombardier
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 9:18 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

SumYunGai wrote:
There is a small possibility you have a serious renter.


Mate, please tell me you,re not serious Rolling Eyes

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ITGuy
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Joined: 10 Aug 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 9:23 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Thanks for the input, all! Much appreciated! It's good to know there are people out there watching out for this garbage and trying to do something about it. I am interested in helping the cause. God know with all the spam we receive daily through our corporate mail server, there's a lot of work to be done.

I have instructed our property managers to ignore these requests and if they have any doubts, to forward me the message for me to research and verify. I have no doubts this web site will be one of my more frequently visited bookmarks!
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harrya
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 9:36 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Another way is to pay by Credit Card cancell and ask that the repayment be made by WU. The card of course was stolen.
Great to see you spotted it.

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